In our news wrap Monday, two suicide bombers targeted a town square in Baghdad, killing at least 38 bystanders and wounding 100 more in the deadliest attack in Iraq since victory was declared over ISIS last month. Also, Turkey is condemning U.S. plans to build a Kurdish security force inside Syria to guard against any Islamic State resurgence.
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In the day’s other news- two suicide bombers killed at least 38 people in Central Baghdad. More than 100 others were wounded when the attackers blew themselves up in a town square. The place was crowded with vendors and day laborers. It was the deadliest attack since Iraq declared victory over the Islamic State group last month.
Turkey is condemning U.S. plans to build a Kurdish security force inside Syria. The U.S. says that 30,000 fighters would guard against any Islamic State resurgence. But the Turks view the Syrian Kurds as loyal to insurgents inside Turkey.
In Ankara today, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned his military will — quote — “drown” the Kurdish militia, and that U.S. troops better stay out of the way.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (through interpreter):
Despite all our objections, all our warnings, a country we call an ally insists on establishing an army of terror along our borders. Don’t stand between us and terrorists. Don’t stand between us and a herd of murderers. Otherwise, we will not be responsible for unwanted incidents.
The U.S. has some 2,000 troops inside Syria, working mostly with the Kurds to fight ISIS.
Officials from North and South Korea met today, for the second time in a week, after months of tensions over the North’s nuclear weapons and missiles. Negotiators sat down again at a border village along the demilitarized zone. The North agreed to send an orchestra to the Winter Olympics in the South next month.
There’s more fallout from the missile alert false alarm that panicked Hawaii. State officials say they have reassigned the worker who mistakenly hit the alert button on Saturday. From now on, it will take two people to send an alert, and they’re making it easier to cancel a false alarm. It took nearly 40 minutes on Saturday.
And crews in Southern California will need another week to reopen Highway 101 after last week’s deadly mudslides. Meanwhile, the 20 people who died in the disaster were remembered last night at a vigil in Santa Barbara. Thousands attended the event, lighting candles and leaving flowers.