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U.N. Security Council Backs Iraq in Confronting Jihadists

The U.N. Security Council on Friday expressed support for Iraq's new government as it confronts Islamist fighters.

The 15-member council adopted a statement backing Iraq at a meeting chaired by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and attended by some 35 countries in a show of solidarity for Baghdad's anti-jihadist stance.

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White House Says Training Syrian Rebels to Take Months

Training and equipping moderate Syrian rebels to fight Islamic State extremists will take months, the White House warned Friday a day after Congress approved the plan.

"We will move out as rapidly as can be done, in partnership with the countries that will host the training facilities," said Susan Rice, national security adviser to President Barack Obama.

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U.S. Says Discussed IS Militant Threat with Iran

The United States has discussed the threat posed by Islamic State militants with envoys from its traditional foe Iran on the sidelines of nuclear talks, the State Department revealed Friday.

"Discussion on this threat did arise on the margins of the meeting as they have from time to time," spokesman Jeff Rathke told reporters.

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Paris: Israel-Palestinian 'solution' to be put to U.N. Security Council

A "solution to the conflict" between the Israelis and Palestinians will be put to the U.N. Security Council, French President Francois Hollande said Friday after meeting Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas in Paris.

"We will have a resolution, to be presented to the Security Council, that will say very clearly what we expect from the (peace) process and what the solution to the conflict must be," Hollande told reporters in a joint news conference with Abbas.

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IS Jihadists Capture 60 Kurdish Villages in Syria

Islamic State jihadists have seized 60 Kurdish villages near the Turkish border in a lightning two-day campaign, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Friday.

"In the past 48 hours, they have taken 60 villages, 40 on Friday alone," said Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman, referring to the operation around Ain al-Arab, known to the Kurds as Kobane.

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Sahrawi Prisoners on Hunger Strike Over ill Treatment

Seven Sahrawi men who were severely beaten at a Moroccan jail in Western Sahara have gone on hunger strike to protest their ill treatment, Amnesty International said Friday.

The men had been handcuffed and severely beaten Wednesday in front of other prisoners in the courtyard of the prison in Laayoune, as well as verbally abused, the London-based rights group quoted eyewitnesses as saying.

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Iraqi Neighborhood Holds out against Jihadists

Caught between jihadists and the Tigris River, residents of one neighborhood in a Sunni town in Iraq have taken up arms alongside security forces and held out for months.

If the fighters, police and soldiers defending the Jubur area in Dhuluiyah north of Baghdad repel the Islamic State (IS) -- a Sunni jihadist group -- it would be a powerful symbol of resistance for the forces battling against it.

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Three Germans Charged over Sending Cameras, Cash to IS

Prosecutors brought formal charges on Friday against three Germans accused of sending money and camera equipment to help the jihadist group Islamic State make propaganda videos.

The accused were identified only as Karolina M., 25, who has been in pre-trial detention since March, as well as Jennifer Vincenza M. and Ahmed-Sadiq M., both 22, who have not been detained.

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John Cantlie: Twice Held Hostage by IS Jihadists

British photojournalist John Cantlie, who appeared in a video released by the Islamic State (IS) organization this week, is known as a courageous reporter who has twice been held hostage by the jihadists in Syria.

Some thought he was dead but the 43-year-old re-surfaced on Thursday in a video looking pale, tired and dressed in an orange jumpsuit in an unidentified location.

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Denmark Tightens Asylum Laws Citing Syrian Influx

Denmark said on Friday it would introduce a new, temporary type of residence permit for asylum seekers fleeing civil wars such as the Syrian conflict after a huge surge in the number of applications.

It also unveiled a new plan for stemming the flow of Danish extremist fighters to Syria and Iraq.

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