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    Middle East
     Jun 11, '14

Iraq 'emergency' call as Mosul falls
By RFE/RL's Radio Free Iraq

Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki is asking parliament to declare a state of emergency after Al-Qaeda-linked militants seized control of one of the largest cities in the country. State TV said parliament will convene on June 12 to discuss the request.

Fighters believed to be affiliated with the Islamic State in Iraq and

the Levant (ISIL) seized key buildings in the northern city of Mosul late on June 9. Officials said dozens of heavily armed insurgents seized the provincial capital's headquarters, occupied police stations, overran the airport, and freed prisoners from jails.

[Armed fighters believed to be part of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant have seized the entire province of Nineveh, of which Mosul is the provincial capital, according to Al Jazeera and other news outlets]

The governor of the northern province of Nineveh, Athil al-Nujaifi, said the military and police forces abandoned their positions in Mosul.

Residents were quoted as saying that black flags associated with jihadist groups were flying from buildings and that the militants had announced over loudspeakers that they had come to "liberate" the city of nearly 2 million people.

Earlier on June 9, Governor Nujaifi made a televised plea to the city's inhabitants to fight the Al-Qaeda-linked militants who have been regaining ground in Iraq. Nujaifi escaped Mosul unharmed before the provincial government's headquarters fell. His brother, parliament speaker Osama al-Nujaifi, called on the Iraqi government and the regional government of Kurdistan to send reinforcements to Mosul. He also said he had asked the US ambassador for help. More ...

Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington DC 20036. For the original article, see here

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