Government Still Holds Baiji Refinery

Iraq's Abadi optimistic on formation of new government
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraq's Prime Minister-designate Haider al-Abadi said on Monday that talks on forming a new government were constructive and predicted a "clear vision" on a unified administration would emerge within the next two days, state television reported.


Iraq: on the frontline with the Shia fighters taking the war to Isis
Special report In the first of a two-part series on the forces ranged against Isis in Iraq, meet the controversial Shia militia keeping the Islamists from moving on Baghdad
The new Iraqi "border" is marked by a two-metre-high wall of earth. The berm, as it is known, cuts through farmland and orchards, separating the shrinking lands of the Iraqi state as it has existed for 95 years from the expanding territory of the new Islamic caliphate.

On the northern side, the black flags of Islamic State (Isis) shimmer in the afternoon haze. But on the Iraqi side it is not a national flag that flutters but a black Shia banner.

'This land is what separates good from evil," says a Shia fighter, pointing at the no man's land between the two forces. "Here you see the flag of Imam Hussein and there you see the black flags of Isis. This is the same history repeating itself," he says, referring to ancient Sunni-Shia enmities that played out on these plains centuries ago.


Al-Maliki's State of law is nice: a third of Parliament and will be influential in policy-making legislature
American held in Syria freed after nearly 2 years