Members of the Shiite Muslim Mehdi Army militia, take part in training in the southern Iraqi city of Basra on June 17, 2014.AFP PHOTO/STR
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Iraqi Shiite volunteers who have been fighting in Syria are heading home to battle an offensive that has brought militants to near Baghdad, according to media reports and an anti-regime monitoring group.Thousands of Iraqi Shiites had flocked to Syria to fight alongside President Bashar Assad's forces against mainly Sunni rebels. Media reports have said the withdrawal also covered Iraqi Shiites fighting in Aleppo, although the majority of reported departures have been in the vicinity of the eastern Ghouta suburbs of Damascus, as well as the nearby Sayyida Zeinab area.
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