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June 16, 2014 AT 11:44 AM
Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday, the Obama administration is willing to talk with Iran over deteriorating security conditions in Iraq and is not ruling out potential U.S.-Iranian military cooperation in stemming the advance of Sunni extremists. Kerry also said that U.S. air strikes, including from unmanned drones, "may well" be an option that President Barack Obama chooses to try to halt the advance of fighters from the al-Qaida-inspired Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL. In the last week, ISIL has taken Iraq's second-largest city, Mosul, and Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit in a lightening offensive that has plunged Iraq into its worst crisis since the 2011 withdrawal of U.S. troops. Over the weekend, militants posted graphic photos that appeared to show their gunmen massacring scores of captured Iraqi soldiers.