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Obama golfs with friends after briefing on Islamic State

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    President Barack Obama tips his cap to a crowd of onlookers after hitting a long chip shot on the 18th hole during his last round of golf at the Mid-Pacific Country Club on Monday.

President Barack Obama returned to the Lanikai golf course where he made an impressive 40-foot chip shot last week on the 18th hole.

The president is golfing with Punahou School friends Mike Ramos, Greg Orme and Bobby Titcomb at the Mid-Pacfic Country Club, where he golfed on his third day of vacation.

Before his golf game, the White House said the president called the governor of Texas and was updated on progress made by Iraqi force against the Islamic State group in Ramadi.

Ramadi fell to IS in May, marking a major setback for Iraq and the U.S. The White House is describing the progress in retaking Ramadi as a testament to the “courage and determination” of the Iraqi security forces.

Iraqi military leaders said security forces seized the main government complex there, though parts of the city remained under IS control.

The White House said the United States and the broader coalition supported the Ramadi operation with more than 630 air strikes, and training and equipment.

A White House readout of Monday’s briefing says the U.S. will continue to “support our partners fighting against ISIL on the ground until it is defeated.”

Obama also called Texas Gov. Gregg Abbott and was updated on the severe weather in Texas.

The president expressed appreciation for the governor’s leadership in responding to the winter storm and relayed heartfelt condolences on behalf of himself and the first lady for those who lost their lives and for the many people who lost their homes in the tornadoes over the weekend, the White House said.

The president directed his team to closely monitor the situation and work with the governor’s staff to provide whatever assistance may be needed.

Obama started his 10th day of vacation with a work out at the gym at Marine Corps Base Hawaii in Kaneohe.

The president’s motorcade entered the base around 7:15 a.m. and left at about 8:45 a.m.

A few kids and a handful of neighbors waited for a glimpse of the motorcade as it passed.

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