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In Libya, the Islamic State’s black banner rises by the Mediterranean

At first, the Islamic State fighters confined themselves to charity work, holding contests for Koranic recitation and distributing money to help locals marry. In the initial months after they appeared in Sirte, the home town of former Libyan dictator Moammar Gaddafi, early this year, the fighters were mostly seen directing traffic or settling local disputes. They even sold oil to residents below cost.

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By Missy Ryan and Hassan Morajea

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