Kurdish Peshmerga female fighters take up positions during combat skills training before being deployed to fight Islamic State militants. Photograph: Ahmed Jadallah/Reuters

Islamic State (IS) fighters have encircled a Kurdish city in northern Syria near the border with Turkey after seizing 21 villages in a major assault t(...)

Syrian refugees enjoy a sunny day in Istanbul. More than 40 per cent of Syria’s pre-war population has been displaced by the conflict, with 2.8 million taking refuge in other countries in the region. PHOTOGRAPH: EPA/ERDEM SAHIN

Despite the war, upheaval and economic collapse at home, Syrian business interests now top the list of international investors in Turkey, even as tens(...)

Members of the Yazidi religious minority  at the Syria-Iraq border in Fishkhabour, northern Iraq. Amnesty gives examples where entire Yezidi families have been kidnapped and are being held in terrible conditions in Mosul and villages captured by the Islamic State. Photograph: EPA

Fighters of the Islamic State have been carrying out ethnic and sectarian cleansing of entire non-Arab and non-Sunni Muslim communities in northern Ir(...)

Syrian refugee children stand in front of their family residence at Azraq refugee camp near Al Azraq, east of Amman. Photograph: Muhammad Hamed/Reuters

Three million Syrian refugees will have registered in neighbouring countries as of Friday, an exodus that began in March 2011 and shows no sign of aba(...)

A man walks  debris caused by fighting in the Syrian war in Ain Tarma in the eastern Ghouta suburb of Damascus yesterday. Photograph: Bassam Khabieh/Reuters.

At least 191,369 people had been killed in Syria’s conflict through April, more than double the figure documented a year ago and probably still an un(...)

A damaged church in Maaloula village, northeast of Damascus in Syria. The recapturing of Maaloula and Yabroud – both areas with large Christian populations close to the Lebanese border – was crucial in preventing opposition forces from moving weapons and supplies between Syria and Lebanon. Photograph: AP Photo/SANA

Sari was driving through the Ghouta region east of Damascus last year delivering car parts to a customer when his car was stopped by several armed (...)

Isis fighters waving flags in a military parade along the streets of Syria’s northern Raqqa province. The jihadist group’s latest gains in Syria are more incremental than its sweep through north and west Iraq in June, but they highlight the continued expansion of a group which two years ago had no presence in the country. Photograph: Reuters

Islamic militants have taken control of most of eastern Syria as they build on the momentum of their advance through Sunni Muslim provinces of neighbo(...)

A member of Kurdish security forces stands guard as families fleeing violence in Mosul wait at a checkpoint. Photograph: Reuters

  Islamic extremists have grabbed control of much of Mosul in northern Iraq after troops abandoned their posts and government buildings, i(...)

Syrian army soldiers loyal to president Bashar al-Assad walk on Hilan Hill, as smoke rises in the background from a village they claim to be shelling. Forces loyal to Dr Assad entered Aleppo’s main prison today. Photograph: George Ourfalian/Reuters

Syrian troops have broken a year-long rebel siege on Aleppo’s main prison after heavy fighting with al-Qaeda fighters and other Islamist brigades, the(...)

Debris rises during what rebel fighters said was an operation in which they blew up a checkpoint in Syria. Reporter Anthony Loyd and photographer Jack Hill were kidnapped, shot and beaten by a ‘rebel gang’ in Syria. Photograph: Reuters

Two London Times journalists covering the Syrian civil war were kidnapped by a “rebel gang” and one of them was shot before members of an anti-extremi(...)