Islamic State leader calls for jihad in audio message

The leader of the Islamic State, formerly Isis, has released the first audiotape calling for jihad since the group renamed. The group is currently battling Iraqi forces across large parts of the country.

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US to send 200 additional troops to Iraq

US President Barack Obama is sending 200 additional troops to Iraq, as government forces continue to battle Islamist militants.

Mr Obama said the additional personnel to reinforce security at the US Embassy, the Baghdad International Airport and other facilities, in light of the ongoing security situation in the country.

Iraqi government forces are struggling to contain the threat from militants. Credit: Reuters

Extra security forces, rotary-wing aircraft as well as intelligence and surveillance support were being sent as part of the deployment.

"This force is deploying for the purpose of protecting US citizens and property, if necessary, and is equipped for combat," Mr Obama said in a letter to the speaker of the House of Representatives.

"This force will remain in Iraq until the security situation becomes such that it is no longer needed."

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