The militant group that has taken control of some key cities in Iraq says it will start implementing its strict version of Islamic law in Mosul and other areas it now controls. It says women should stay in their homes for reasons of modesty, and that thieves will have their hands cut off. And it's telling Sunni members of the military and police to abandon their posts and "repent" -- or else "face only death."
Video that's been posted online today shows some residents of the Iraqi city of Tikrit (tih-KREET') celebrating the city's takeover by militants from the al-Qaida-inspired group.
The group is vowing to march on to Baghdad. But the capital doesn't appear to be in imminent danger of a similar assault. Baghdad would be a much harder target for the militants because of its large Shiite population. So far, fighters from the group have stuck to the Sunni heartland.
President Obama said Thursday that Iraq will need additional assistance from the U.S. to push back the insurgency, however, he did not elaborate on what assistance he is willing to provide.
The President did say the White House has not ruled anything out. He said he is watching the situation in Iraq with concern and wants to ensure that jihadists don't get a foothold.
House Speaker John Boehner says the U.S. still has vital interests in Iraq and that progress is clearly in jeopardy. He accused the president of "taking a nap" as terrorists capture Iraqi cities and move toward the capitol.
He says President Obama's focus should be on completing the U.S. mission there and says the president should get engaged before it is too late. He says the U.S. should provide equipment and technical assistance to the beleaguered Iraqi government.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has asked his parliament to declare a state of emergency that would give him increased powers, but the lawmakers have not done so.
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