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    Islamists make gains in northern Iraq as car bombs rock Baghdad

    euronews (in English)

    by euronews (in English)

    Islamist militants have seized three more towns in northern Iraq and thousands of Christians have fled Qaraqosh, as the insurgents gain a foothold in the Kurdish region.

    The news comes after a series of bomb blasts rocked Baghdad on Wednesday night, killing 51 people in predominantly Shi’ite areas.

    ‘‘A car bomb exploded here and when people gathered to evacuate victims, another car bomb exploded. So many people were either killed or wounded,” explained Ali Hussein at the scene of the blast.

    It follows a steady campaign of car bombings in the capital, though last night marked the most deadly.

    The city remains on edge after Sunni fighters from the Islamic State group took control of towns in the north of the country as well as parts of Syria and declared a caliphate.

    The Iraqi government claimed a rare victory against the militants on Wednesday after an airstrike killed around 60 people in a building held by the insurgents.