The site of the citadel dates back almost 8000 years and archaeologists have uncovered ancient artefacts, as workers revive it as a tourist spot and museum.
In Sunni-majority Mosul, Saddam Hussein is still idolised and the central authorities in Baghdad are distrusted as Mosul limps through the ISIS occupation.
Iraqi forces battled ISIS militants in their stronghold of Mosul and took control of the last major road leading west from the city, before bomb blasts ripped through a wedding party near Tikrit, killing more than 20 people.
In western Mosul, the UN estimates that up to 400,000 civilians, half of them children, already suffering shortages could be displaced by the offensive.
The US commander in Iraq, army Lieutenant General Stephen Townsend, says that they will be able to capture Mosul and Raqqa within the next six months.
Influential cleric Moqtada al-Sadr and Iran backed Nuri-al-Maliki are locked in a tussle to gain enough power before the upcoming elections.
The clashes broke out as the protesters attempted to cross the bridge that links Tahrir Square and the heavily fortified Green Zone.
ISIS claimed carrying out the first attack in a statement, saying the bomber had targeted “a gathering of Shi’ites” in Jamila, the other was unclaimed.
Four other attacks on Monday, claimed by ISIS, killed nine more people – bringing the total death toll in the capital over the past three days to over 60.
Police said the blasts went off near car parts shops in Sinak neighbourhood during the morning rush. There was no immediate claim of responsibility.
A suicide truck bomb killed about 100 people, most of them Iranian Shi’ite pilgrims, at a petrol station in Hilla city, south of Baghdad.
Gun trucks and humvees streamed north heading to Mosul, flying the banners of Shi’ite militias along with Iraqi flags while blaring religious songs.
ISIS’s assault on Kirkuk, which lies in an oil-producing region, killed six members of the security forces and two Iranians
Iraqi forces backed by air strikes from the US-led coalition gained complete control of the northern district of Shirqat, which is 100 km south of Mosul.
Thousands of civilians are thought to be trapped in Shirqat, and officials have warned for months of a humanitarian disaster inside, where residents living under ISIS’s harsh rule say food supplies have dwindled and prices soared.
Interviews with soldiers who survived the siege of Fallujah reveal the immense human cost that the battle extracted.
It is the highest number of militants executed in one day by the Iraqi government since ISIS fighters took control of parts of northern and western Iraq in 2014.
The attack was the deadliest bombing in Iraq since US-led forces toppled Saddam Hussein 13 years ago.
As the geographical area under ISIS control shrinks, it is encouraging its supporters to carry out “lone wolf” attacks.
‘Useless’ bomb detectors are being used by security personnel throughout the Middle East, serving no real purpose other than being a symbolic deterrent.
ISIS continues to wreak havoc in Iraq, claims responsibility for a suicide car bombing that killed 16 people outside an Iraqi town on Monday morning.
US officials consider the increasing use of suicide bombers by ISIS as a sign of weakness.
Forces took control of Qayara base, a strategic air base south of Mosul, on July 9, with air support from the US-led coalition.
No group has taken responsibility for the bombing in Rashidiya so far, as Baghdad remains on high alert for possible attacks.
The attack on the Mausoleum of Sayid Mohammed bin Ali al-Hadi has reignited fears of an escalation of the sectarian strife between Iraq’s Shi’ites and Sunnis.
The weekend attack has shown that ISIS is still capable of bombing Baghdad despite having lost control of their stronghold, Falluja last month.
Despite a string of territorial gains by Iraq’s ground forces against ISIS, the attacks show that ISIS can still strike in the heart of the Iraqi capital.
The twin bombings are the deadliest this year and took place despite the major victory of Iraqi forces in dislodging ISIS from their stronghold of Falluja last month.
The attack in Dhaka could be the work of local radical groups seeking publicity through their gruesome acts but the common discourse is international
ISIS has claimed responsibility for the two bombings that targeted a busy shopping area.
The quasi-state is now vulnerable to attack on many fronts, thanks to fewer militants to enforce its draconian rules and unsuccessful efforts to recruit locals.
Al-Abadi’s reshuffle to bring five technocrats into his cabinet had generated social and political opposition.
The prediction of such a vast humanitarian emergency creates additional complications for the Iraqi government and its US allies.
The battle in Falluja has allowed Abadi to shift the focus domestically away from a crisis that unfolded when he failed to push through a cabinet reshuffle he sought as part of his drive to fight corruption.
Rather than the arbiter of global energy, OPEC is and has always been a dysfunctional, divided and discouraged organisation.
The attacks came as Iraqi forces and Shi’ite militias are fighting Islamic State militants in Falluja.
US Defence Secretary Ash Carter’s full-throated backing of Haider al-Abadi follows months of intense Iraqi political wrangling that has put the country on edge.
The US vice president’s visit is a sign of the progress Washington believes Iraqi forces have made in beating back militants over the past year and its hope that the northern city of Mosul can be recaptured before Barack Obama leaves office in January.
Most of the new US advisers, who will make up the bulk of the new troops, will be Army Special Forces, as are the about 100 advisers now in Iraq.