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Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi

IS destroys iconic al-Nuri mosque in Mosul

FILE – This Sept. 25, 1998 file photo shows the tilting al-Hadba minaret in Mosul, Iraq. IRBIL, Iraq (AP) — The Islamic State group destroyed Mosul’s al-Nuri mosque and its iconic leaning minaret known as al-Hadba when fighters detonated explosives inside the structures Wednesday night, Iraq’s Ministry of Defense said. …

In Damascus, an uneasy stability boosts Syria’s Assad

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Looking out from the Syrian capital these days, one can understand why President Bashar Assad would be in no hurry to make concessions at peace talks in Geneva, let alone consider stepping down as the opposition demands. In Damascus, it is easy to forget the war. …