Iraq battles ISIL onslaught

June 25, 2014 5:35 AM

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BAGHDAD: Iraqi forces held off attacks on a key town and an oil refinery as top US diplomat John Kerry pushed on Tuesday for unity in a conflict the UN says has killed nearly 1,100.

But those successes were marred when dozens of civilians were killed by air strikes aiming to push back Sunni insurgents, led by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), who have seized swathes of five provinces north and west of Baghdad.

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