FADED CELEBRITY IN CHIEF BARRY O IS CLINGING TO HIS NON-DEAL IRAN 'DEAL' BECAUSE, HONESTLY, WHAT ELSE DOES HE HAVE?
DRUNK OR SOBER, HE TRIPPED OVER A LITTLE GIRL RECENTLY.
AND PRACTICAL JOKER OR JUST CHILD HATER, HE UNLEASHED A SWARM OF BEES ON A GROUP OF CHILDREN AT EASTER.
REACHED FOR COMMENT BY THESE REPORTERS, WHITE HOUSE SPOKESPERSON JOSH EARNEST STATED, "I CONSIDER IT A PERSONAL VICTORY THAT -- SO FAR -- HE HAS MANAGED TO KEEP HIS PANTS ON IN PUBLIC."
FROM THE TCI WIRE:
Today, Iraq's Prime Minister visited the Kurdistan Regional Government. The KRG is in northern Iraq and semi-autonomous. This was Haider al-Abadi's first visit to the region since becoming prime minister last August.
Alsumaria reports that KRG President Massoud Barzani greeted Haider at the Erbil airport as the prime minister disembarked from his plane. Al Mada notes that the visit also resulted in the two leaders holding their first joint-press conference. At the press conference, the Daily Star notes, Haider spoke of 'liberated' Tikrit:
Iraq’s prime minister said Monday that “only” 152 homes and shops were burned in Tikrit, where pro-government forces have been accused of carrying out abuses after retaking the city last week.
Haider al-Abadi did not specify who burned the structures or when the fires took place, but pro-government militiamen have admitted to torching houses in other recaptured areas and allegedly did so in Tikrit.
Of those "152 homes and shops," Al Mada breaks it down to Abadi stating 67 homes and 85 shops.
AP adds, "Speaking in Irbil, capital of the semi-autonomous Kurdish region, Haider al-Abadi pledged that the 'properties and rights' of local residents would be respected once Islamic State militants were driven out."
But of course the 'properties and rights' were not respected. We'll get to it.
For now, focus on the "only" figure of house and shops damaged. 152 is no small number. However, others are noting much larger numbers than Haider provided. Wael Grace (Al Mada) notes local officials in Tikrit are saying the damage is much more than al-Abadi is letting on with half the infrastructure and buildings left damaged from the Islamic State occupation and the 'liberation.'
So did the focus go to how to mend fences, how to bring the Sunnis in?
All Iraq News reports that Massoud Barzani "announced the formation of a joint committee for joint operations." Alsumaria notes his office issued a statement saying that now was the time for Iraqi to work together against the threat of the Islamic State.
Iraqi Kurdistan Regional President Masoud Barzani said Monday he and Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar Abadi have agreed to act jointly to counter Islamic State (ISIL) militants.
"We have agreed on joint actions to save Iraq from terrorism," Barzani said at a press conference in the city of Erbil.
The Iraqi leader said the parties had agreed on joint efforts to free the northern Nineveh Governorate and the city of Mosul.
Military. And, for a splash of color, All Iraq News notes that part of the visit included Haider and Barzani visiting a refugee camp in Erbil.
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