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Iraq's warring powers approach sectarian faultlines

The battle between Iraqi forces and the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) could get even more brutal as the conflict occurs in Sunni-Shiite contact points.
A woman walks past the site of a car bomb attack in Baghdad's Sadr City, June 18, 2014. At least 13 people were killed and 30 others wounded in a car bomb explosion in Baghdad's mainly Shi'ite neighbourhood of Sadr City, according to police and hospital officials.  REUTERS/Wissm al-Okili (IRAQ - Tags: CIVIL UNREST POLITICS) - RTR3UDVU
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The battles that erupted when gunmen from the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) and other groups occupied Mosul on June 10 are now approaching sensitive areas for the Shiite community, shifting the patterns and implications of the conflict. 

After the gunmen took Mosul, they headed south toward Tikrit and the provinces of Salahuddin and Kirkuk, bypassing the city of Tal Afar, which lies northwest of Mosul and is predominantly inhabited by Shiite Turkmens. But on June 16, they attacked Tal Afar without being able to gain control of it.

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