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Iraq PM offers aid to displaced while calling on Sunnis to fight militants

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki says his government has allocated two installments of 500 billion dinars ($429 million) to assist citizens who have been internally displaced by the advance of Sunni militants across northern and western Iraq.

In his weekly address Wednesday, al-Maliki also called on those living in Sunni-majority areas overrun by the Islamic State group and allied militants to take up arms against the insurgents.

Last month's rapid advance by the extremist group, which captured Iraq's second largest city Mosul, plunged the country into its worst crisis since the withdrawal of U.S. troops in 2011, with more than a million Iraqis now classified as internally displaced or refugees.