The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

World News

June 27, 2014

Iraq's top cleric calls for deal on PM by Tuesday

BAGHDAD — Iraq's top Shiite cleric stepped up the pressure Friday on politicians to agree on Iraq's next prime minister, after incumbent Nouri al-Maliki lost the confidence of former allies in the fight against Sunni militants.

The appeal by Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani comes as al-Maliki is fighting to keep his job, with even key patron Iran exploring alternatives in the face of Iraq's worst crisis since U.S. troops withdrew at the end of 2011.

The conflict has drawn the Americans back to Iraq with special forces being deployed to help Iraqi troops. The U.S. also has started flying armed drones over Baghdad to protect U.S. interests in the Iraqi capital, a Pentagon official said Friday. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the new flights on the record.

Al-Maliki, who has governed the country since 2006, needs support from other parties after his State of Law bloc won the most seats in the elections but failed to gain the majority needed to govern alone. That set the stage for potentially months of coalition negotiations. But now a new government is wanted urgently to face the lightning advance across the north and west of the country by the al-Qaida breakaway Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

The stunning gains were made possible in large part because Iraqi security forces melted away in the face of the onslaught.

Human Rights Watch released a report Friday about the killings of scores of police and soldiers by the Sunni militants in the days after it captured the northern city of Mosul on June 10 then stormed south to capture Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit.

The killings were widely reported after the Islamic State posted graphic, online photos showing dozens of men wearing civilian clothes lined up and bent over as militants pointed rifles at them from behind. A final set of photos shows bodies.

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World News
  • UN calls for probe of plane downed over Ukraine

    The U.N. Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution Monday demanding international access to the site of the plane downed over eastern Ukraine and an end to military activities around the area, following intense pressure on a reluctant Russia to support the measure.

    July 21, 2014

  • Truce elusive as Hamas, Israel stick to positions

    The top Hamas leader in the Gaza Strip signaled Monday that the Islamic militant group will not agree to an unconditional cease-fire with Israel, while Israel's defense minister pledged to keep fighting "as long as necessary" — raising new doubt about the highest-level mediation mission in two weeks.

    July 21, 2014

  • Israeli shells hit hospital in Gaza, official says

    Israeli tank shells struck a hospital in the Gaza Strip on Monday, killing four people and wounding 60, Palestinian officials said, as Israel's defense minister vowed to press on with the war against Hamas "as long as necessary."

    July 21, 2014

  • 7-21-14 Ukraine plane photo Rebels take full control of plane crash bodies TOREZ, Ukraine (AP) — Rebels in eastern Ukraine took control Sunday of the bodies recovered from downed Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, and the U.S. and European leaders demanded that Russian President Vladimir Putin make sure rebels give international

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Iraqi PM condemns jihadis' targeting of Christians BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq’s prime minister on Sunday condemned the Islamic State extremist group’s actions targeting Christians in territory it controls, saying they reveal the threat the jihadists pose to the minority community’s “centuries-old heritage.”

    July 21, 2014

  • Malaysians wonder 'Why us?' after second loss of airline jet

    It was all too familiar. Grieving families rushing to airport. The flashing television graphics of a plane's last radar appearance. The uncomfortable officials before a heavy thicket of microphones.
    For many Malaysians, the disappearance of Flight 370 in March has been a long trauma from which the nation has not yet recovered.

    July 19, 2014

  • Israel deepens Gaza push to destroy Hamas tunnels

    Israeli troops pushed deeper into Gaza on Friday to destroy rocket launching sites and tunnels, firing volleys of tank shells and clashing with Palestinian fighters in a high-stakes ground offensive meant to weaken the enclave's Hamas rulers.

    July 18, 2014

  • The terrible history of passenger planes getting shot out of the sky

    What is more clear is that, if initial reports are true, this would be the deadliest incident of a civilian passenger plane being shot down in modern memory. In some instances, the causes of the disaster are still shrouded in mystery. Here are some of the worst events.

    July 18, 2014

  • gaza.jpg Israel says it has sent ground troops to Gaza

    Israel launched a large-scale ground offensive in the Gaza Strip Thursday, escalating a 10-day military operation to try to destroy Hamas' weapons arsenal, rocket firing abilities and tunnels under the Palestinian territory's border with Israel.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hamas, Israel resume attacks after brief truce

    Gaza residents rushed to banks, vegetable markets and shops Thursday during a first U.N.-brokered lull in 10 days of Israel-Hamas fighting, but a quick resumption of hostilities after it ended signaled that a permanent truce remains elusive.

    July 17, 2014

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