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An al-Qaeda-inspired splinter group, the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL), has been marching towards Baghdad capturing two major cities in the north in just a few days. The group’s offensive surprised Iraqi forces, who have offered little to no resistance so far, pushing Iraq into a state of chaos. ISIL, which also controls parts of Syria, has the goal of creating a large Islamic state stretching from Iraq to Syria. This week, the group has seized control of Mosul, forcing thousands upon thousands to flee, as well as Saddam Hussein’s hometown of Tikrit.



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