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Security forces battled for a second day Saturday with Islamic State group gunmen who infiltrated Kirkuk in a brazen raid that rattled Iraq as it ramped up an offensive to retake Mosul. A toxic cloud released by a fire IS militants set off at a sulphur plant south of Mosul earlier this week killed at least two civilians and forced some US service members to wear masks. A day after the shock attack on the Kurdish-controlled city of Kirkuk, jihadist snipers and suspected suicide bombers were still at large, prompting Baghdad to send reinforcements.
Canada turned up the heat on the European Union Saturday, saying it was the bloc's "job" to save a trade pact put in doubt by a Belgian region's refusal to sign on. Chrystia Freeland, the Canadian trade minister, was firm after leaving last-ditch talks with European parliament head Martin Schulz to salvage the proposed accord that was seven years in the making. "Now the ball is in Europe's court and it's time for Europe to finish doing its job," Freeland said, adding that she was returning to Toronto on Saturday.