Iraqi forces say they have repelled Islamic State militants from a district 90 kilometres north of Baghdad. But the apparent victory in Diyala province has done little to quell the Sunni-led offensive.
Insurgents are boasting of more gains in the north of the country. They say they are now in control of 15 towns, Iraq’s biggest dam and a military base.
Thousands of people have also fled the country’s largest Christian town – Qaraqosh – after it was seized.
In the strategic oil area of Kirkuk, at least 11 people are reported dead after two car bombs exploded near a mosque.
The building was being used to shelter Shiite refugees who had fled violence in their hometown of Tal Afar.
Meanwhile, in Baghdad, another car bomb has killed more than a dozen people.
France is now calling on the UN Security Council to hold an emergency meeting over the crisis, which poses the biggest threat to Iraq since the fall of Saddam Hussein.
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