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Iraq's al-Maliki extends overtures to rivals

Iraqi forces and Sunni militants battled fiercely for control of the nation's largest oil refinery on Wednesday as Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki went on a diplomatic offensive, reaching out in a televised address to try to regain support from the nation's disaffected Sunnis and Kurds.

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Volunteers train at military base in the Shiite holy city of Najaf, 100 miles (160 kilometers) south of Baghdad, Iraq, Tuesday, June 17, 2014, after authorities urged Iraqis to help battle insurgents. Signs emerged Tuesday of a reprisal sectarian slaughter of Sunnis in Iraq, as police said pro-government Shiite militiamen killed nearly four dozen detainees after insurgents tried to storm the jail northeast of Baghdad. (AP Photo/ Jaber al-Helo)
Photo by Associated Press
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