Iraqi security officials today admitted that al-Qaida-inspired militants have seized the northern city of Tikrit.
Officials in Baghdad said that Saddam Hussein's hometown was under the control of the insurgent group, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, whose gunmen took control of Mosul, the country's second largest city, earlier this week.
The officials say the provincial governor based in the city is missing.
Islamic radicals seized control of Iraq's third-biggest city, Mosul, on Tuesday, which triggered a refugee exodus. On seizing control, the militant group freed thousands of fellow fighters in a series of jailbreaks. (See: Iaslamists seize control of Iraq's third-biggest city, Mosul)