Iraq

Ottawa to appoint first resident ambassador to Iraq in 26 years

The Liberal government will appoint a resident ambassador to Iraq in the coming weeks, the first one Canada has had on the ground in Baghdad in nearly 26 years. Sources told The Globe and Mail that naming an ambassador to Iraq is a part of the Liberal government’s retooled strategy to fight the Islamic State announced in February, 2016. It ...

Iraq forces in Mosul punch to Tigris for first time

Arbil (Iraq) (AFP) – Iraqi forces battling jihadists in Mosul reached the Tigris River that divides the city Sunday, a key step and a first since the launch of a huge operation in mid-October. The Islamic State group was on the back foot in Mosul after a week of significant gains for Iraqi forces but pressed a deadly campaign of ...

Iraq: Suicide attacks rock Baghdad killing at least 20

Suicide bombings at two marketplaces in eastern Baghdad killed at least 20 people – the latest in a spate of attacks in the Iraqi capital that have left dozens dead in recent days. In the first blast claimed  by Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL),  the attacker drove an explosives-rigged car into a vegetable market in the mainly ...

Correction: United States-Iraq story

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a story Jan. 4 about the U.S.-led coalition’s military advisers in Iraq, The Associated Press quoted a U.S. military spokesman who erroneously stated that the coalition had recently doubled the size of its adviser corps. The spokesman says he misstated the size of the increase, which represented only 40 more advisers and not a doubling. A ...

Suicide bomber detonates explosive-laden car killing at least 32 in Iraq

REPORTED BY KALAHAN DENG Asuicide car bomb blast killed at least 32 people and wounded more than 60 on Monday in Baghdad’s Shiite majority neighbourhood of Sadr City. Police officials said the bomber struck on a square where daily labourers were waiting for jobs, causing one of the highest casualty tolls in the capital in months. A suicide bomber detonated an explosives-laden car on a square ...

Iraq resumes Mosul operation after a two-week lull

Iraqi troops backed by US-led air strikes have pushed deeper into eastern Mosul after a two-week lull in the operation to retake the city held by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) group. Staff Lieutenant-General Abdulghani al-Assadi, a senior officer in Iraq’s counterterrorism service, said the second phase of the  operation, now in ...

Christmas reborn in Iraqi town freed from ISIS

REPORTED BY KALAHAN DENG In the ancient Iraqi Christian town of Bartella — recently liberated from ISIS — Christmas was celebrated for the first time in more than two years on Saturday. It was an emotional return for members of Bartella’s displaced Christian community, who had been forced to flee when their hometown was overrun by the Islamist terror group. ...

The Islamic State has been pushed back but the future still looks bleak for Christians in the Middle East

REPORTED BY KALAHAN DENG On the last Sunday of October the church bells in the Iraqi Christian town of Qaraqosh rang out for the first time in two years. The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) had been been driven out, leaving behind only the dead bodies of their fighters and the churches that lay desecrated but not ...

Iraq’s Muslims celebrate Christmas in solidarity with Christians

BAGHDAD — With every year, Christmas in Baghdad is marked with more festivities than the year before. Is this merely a celebration of joy or a deep expression of solidarity with the threatened Christian minorit Commercial streets such Karada, al-Mansour, Palestine and Zaytouna are adorned with Christmas trees and Santa Claus. Zawraa park in the center of the capital is hosting ...

On the front lines of Canadian assistance in Iraq

The town lies 65 kilometres south of the city where an Iraqi-led operation to root out the Islamic State has now, as of late December, entered its tenth week. An Iraqi commander instructs the convoy to hurry as it snakes its way through narrow streets, and, pointing toward buildings a few kilometres away, warns that snipers might still be lying ...

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