News Wrap: Libyan headquarters of ISIS captured, claim U.S.-backed fighters

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Libyan forces allied with the U.N.-backed government fire weapons during a battle with IS fighters in Sirte, Libya, July 21, 2016. REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic/File Photo - RTSLTSA

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GWEN IFILL: In the day’s other news: U.S.-backed fighters in Libya claimed they have captured Islamic State headquarters in the city of Sirte. Militias attacked ISIS positions in June, but the fighting had been stalemated for weeks. They finally broke through with the help of U.S. airstrikes that began 10 days ago.

JUDY WOODRUFF: In Afghanistan, the government is sending more troops to a key southern province, in the face of major Taliban gains.

Insurgent fighters have surrounded Lashkar Gah, capital of Helmand Province, after weeks of intense fighting. Newly deployed security forces arrived on the outskirts of the city today to join the battle. The Afghan units are getting air support from the U.S.

GWEN IFILL: A tragedy overnight in Baghdad. Officials say a dozen babies died in a fire that engulfed a hospital maternity ward. Investigators said initial indications are the blaze was sparked by faulty electrical wiring. Bereaved families gathered outside the hospital today, appealing for information and struggling to come to terms with their loss.

SHAYMA HUSSEIN, Bereaved Mother (through translator): I looked at the victims. I saw them charred. It was a horrible scene. It was very difficult for me to give birth to a child. I have had medical treatments to have a baby. After all these efforts, I received a charred body.

GWEN IFILL: Outrage over the fire is likely to add to pressure on Iraq’s government to upgrade deteriorating facilities.

JUDY WOODRUFF: Brazil’s Senate formally voted today to put President Dilma Rousseff on trial. She was suspended in may for allegedly violating budget rules and spending funds without government approval. The trial will begin later this month, and if Rousseff is convicted, she will be expelled from office.

GWEN IFILL: And at the Summer Olympics, an American cyclist won the gold medal in the women’s time trial in road racing. Kristin Armstrong has now won that event for the third straight Olympics. She turns 43 years old tomorrow.

Meanwhile, organizers stepped up security after someone pelted a media bus with rocks last night. Two people were hurt.

JUDY WOODRUFF: More headaches today for Delta Air Lines passengers, in the wake of Monday’s computer outage. More than 300 flights were canceled and hundreds more were delayed. That is on top of some 1,800 scrapped on Monday and Tuesday.

GWEN IFILL: On Wall Street today, the Dow Jones industrial average lost 37 points to close at 18495. The Nasdaq fell nearly 21 points, and the S&P 500 slipped six.

JUDY WOODRUFF: And archaeologists in Bulgaria have found what is likely the world’s oldest gold artifact. The tiny bead measures only about an eighth of an inch across, and dates back to around 4500 B.C. It was discovered in the country’s south, at the site of one of Europe’s earliest urban settlements.

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