Zee Media Bureau/Tarun Khanna and Hemant Abhishek
The mayor of a town northwest of Baghdad has said that it has fallen into the hands of Sunni militants, the second to be captured by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in the mainly Sunni Anbar province.
The fall of Rawah, and the border town of Qaim on Friday, appears to be part of a new offensive. It comes as thousands of heavily-armed Shiite militiamen paraded through several
US President Barack Obama has again asked Iraqi leaders to come up with a political solution.
Because "if they don`t, there won`t be a military solution to the problem", Obama told CNN in an interview.
Shiite fighters paraded in Baghdad in a dramatic show of force aimed at Sunni militants who seized a Syrian border crossing, widening a western front in an offensive threatening to rip Iraq apart.
Meanwhile, Washington readied a new diplomatic bid to unite Iraq`s fractious leaders and repel insurgents whose lightning offensive has displaced hundreds of thousands, alarmed the world and put Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki under growing pressure domestically and overseas.
The militants of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and the Army of the Men of the Naqshbandiyah Order (JRTN), who had fought together to capture swathes of Iraqi territory, on Saturday fought with each other.
The clash between the two groups took 17 lives.
There were differing accounts as to what sparked the firefight, which is a potential sign of the fraying of the Sunni insurgent alliance that has overrun vast stretches of territory north of Baghdad in less than two weeks, as per AFP report.
The Islamist militants have got hold of Qaim crossing into Syria, killing at least 30 Iraqi troops after heavy fighting, said security officials.
Although the ISIS militants have been able to cross the border amid the conflict in neighbouring Syria, control of the crossings makes it simpler to move weapons and other heavy equipment between the two countries.
Qaim is about 320 kilometres west of Baghdad.
Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hussein Amir Abdollahian in an interview said that US is not keen on fighting terrorism in Iraq.
“Obama’s recent remarks showed that the White House lacks serious will for confronting terrorism in Iraq and the region,” Iraqi News quoted Amir Abdollahian`s statement.
Iraq envoy Ahmad Tahseen Ahmad Berwari has assured that many Indians are in the areas which are safe and have been asked to stay indoors.
He further said that any help or suggestions by the Indian government is welcomed by Iraq.
As the crisis in Iraq intensifying, the stranded Indians workers have been denied of their passports by their employer.
“They said they have not been paid salaries for the past five months and their passports have been held” said Amnesty International.
"We have been restricting ourselves to the company premises since the conflict began because we are scared. Without our passports, we can`t leave this country, and every passing day makes us feel more and more unsafe. We just want to go home," one of the workers was quoted as telling Amnesty, as per IANS.
Barack Obama has asked the Iraq leaders to find a political solution to the crisis going on in the country.
He further said that there is no military solution to the problem and that US will not return to its combat role in Iraq rather it will send 300 military advisers to assist Iraq.
US Secretary of State John Kerry will reach out to Europe and Middle East to discuss Iraq crisis.
During his visit, he will be discussing security stability and the formation of an inclusive government in Iraq.
He will first hold consultations in Jordan and then in Belgium.
Soon after top Shiite cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani urged thousands of Iraqis to fight against Sunni Arab militants, dozens crowded the shops in Central Baghdad to buy military equipments including helmets, boots and camouflage uniforms.
Moreover, the shops dealing in military equipments are making lots of money.
"From the beginning of the crisis, there was an increase in sales... of about 200 percent, 300 percent," while prices have risen as well, says Osama, the owner of one shop in central Baghdad, as per PTI report.