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White House condemns terrorist taking of Iraqi city

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White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest said America is monitoring the situation in Iraq in coordination with the Iraqi government. (Source: CBS) White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest said America is monitoring the situation in Iraq in coordination with the Iraqi government. (Source: CBS)

WASHINGTON, DC (CBS) - The White House is reacting on Tuesday to the seizure of the Iraqi city of Mosul by terrorists. "The United States condemns in the strongest possible terms the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant's (ISIL) aggression in Mosul. It has led to a serious deterioration of the security situation in that city, and in Ninawa province," said White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest.

Earnest said U.S. officials in Washington and Baghdad were tracking events closely. Mosul is the second largest city in Iraq.

"ISIL gained strength from the situation in Syria. This threat exemplifies the need for Iraqis from all communities to work together to confront this common enemy, and isolate these militant groups from the broader population. The situation is extremely serious, and U.S. officials in both Washington and Baghdad are tracking events closely, in coordination with the government of Iraq," Earnest said.

He added that the U.S. will continue to stand with the Iraqi people and will provide assistance to Iraq under the security agreement to combat the threat posed by ISIL in the region.

Copyright 2014 CBS. All rights reserved.

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