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Iraq crisis: Islamist militants close in on Baghdad after capturing two towns north of capital

Islamist militants are closing in on Baghdad after capturing two towns north of Iraq’s capital. Officials said Iraqi soldiers abandoned their posts with no resistance when fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isis) pushed into Diyala province. Militants driving machine gun-mounted pickups entered the towns of Jalula and Sadiyah on Thursday night, police said. Jalula is 80 miles from Baghdad and Sadiyah is 60 miles away. Sunni fundamentalist fighters have vowed to capture Baghdad and Shia holy cities further south after overrunning Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city, and driving the army out of northern provinces. Their numbers are bolstered by Saddam Hussein-era loyalists…