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US House backs suspension of Syrian refugee programme

Members of the US House of Representatives in Congress backed the bill. Credit: Reuters

Legislation to suspend Barack Obama's Syrian refugee programme and increase security screenings for Syrians has been passed by the US House of Representatives.

Defying a White House veto threat, members of the House voted to halt the President's plan to admit 10,000 Syrian refugees in the next year.

The vote on Thursday was easily won, by 289 votes to 137.

The majority of members voted along party lines, although dozens of Democrats broke ranks to vote for the bill.



Hillary Clinton criticised over 2003 Iraq invasion

US presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton came under fire in the latest Democratic candidate debate for her backing of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, with rivals arguing the move had sparked the rise of Islamic State militants.

Senator Bernie Sanders is running against Hillary Clinton Credit: Reuters

Bernie Sanders and Martin O'Malley both took an aggressive stance against Clinton, widely viewed as the front-runner in the race, also accusing her of being too cosy with Wall Street.

Sanders criticised her approval of the invasion as "one of the worst foreign policy blunders in the modern history of the United States."

I would argue that the disastrous invasion of Iraq, something that I strongly opposed, unraveled the region immensely, and led to the rise of al-Qaeda and to ISIS.

I don't think any sensible person would disagree that the invasion of Iraq led to the massive level of instability we are seeing right now.

– Bernie Sanders

Clinton, who has frequently called the vote a mistake in the past, said her opponents should view the vote in its "historical context", and said the rise of jihadi extremists had started before 2003.

"This is an incredibly complicated region of the world. It's become more complicated," she said.

"And many of the fights that are going on are not ones that the United States has either started or have a role in."

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