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From Washington, this is VOA news. I'm Dave DeForest reporting.
The American defense chief calls for more effort from the Iraqis: U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter is calling on Iraq to make a greater commitment to fight the Islamic State. Carter said the Iraqis have failed to recruit enough ground troops to fight the militants that have taken over large parts of the country.
Forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad have added another weapon to their arsenal. The latest weapons are called "elephant rockets," named after the noise they make in flight. According to political activists at least two dozen civilians were killed Tuesday in a Damascus suburb by the rockets.