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Thursday, June 19, 2014

WHERE IS ISIS

WHERE IS ISIS

Posted by EXOGEN on June 19, 2014 at 8:53am

Maps: Crisis in Iraq

updated 6:30 PM EDT, Wed June 18, 2014
Militants from a group called the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, are waging an offensive that have seen vast swaths of northern Iraq fall out of government hands. ISIS, an al Qaeda splinter group, wants to establish a caliphate, or Islamic state, that would stretch from Iraq into northern Syria. The group has had substantial success in Syria battling President Bashar al-Assad's security forces. Related story »

ISIS presence

Extremist militants have overrun Mosul, Iraq's second-largest city. In recent weeks, they've wrested control of Iraqi cities like Falluja and parts of Ramadi from authorities, just as they've done with Syrian towns over the border. Militants believed to be from ISIS have also taken control of two villages in Iraq's Kirkuk province and seized parts of the oil town of Baiji in Salaheddin province, authorities said. As many as half a million civilians have fled their homes to escape the violence. The red dots on the map below highlight some of the locations with ISIS presence.
Source: CNN

Ethnic divide

Iraq is a country deeply split along sectarian lines. There are three major sects: Shiite Muslims, Sunni Muslims and Kurds. Iraq's prime minister, Nuri al-Maliki, is a Shiite Muslim. Sunni Muslims -- the minority in Iraq -- often find themselves left out. Some experts say that ISIS has found a base among Iraq's Sunni community.
Source: STRATFOR
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