Iraqi Sunni fighters battling Islamic State (IS) group jihadists alongside government forces fire their weapons on the outskirts of Iraq’s Baiji oil refinery, about 200 kilometres north of Baghdad on Monday. A military operation has been launched to drive Islamic State out of the western Anbar province. Photograph: Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty Images 1:07

A military operation has been launched to drive Islamic State out of the western Anbar province of Iraq, where the extremists captured the provincial (...)

Iraqi families, who fled the city of Ramadi after it was seized by Islamic State , gather during a sand storm at a camp. Photograph: Getty Images

A convoy of Shia Muslim militia and Iraqi army forces set out from a base near Ramadi on Saturday to advance on areas held by Islamic State, a Shia sp(...)

Iraqi families, who fled the city of Ramadi after it was seized by Islamic State, waiting to cross Bzeibez bridge on the southwestern frontier of Baghdad on Friday.  Photograph: Ahmad al-rubaye/AFP/Getty Images

The Islamic State (IS) seized Syria’s last border crossing with Iraq yesterday, after big advances in both countries that have cast doubt on the effe(...)

The ancient Roman city of Palmyra, northeast of Damascus, before it was overrrun by Islamic State forces. The advance of the jihadists in both Iraq and Syria has forced their opponents to reappraise strategy. Photograph: AP 1:07

Islamic State fighters are celebrating their second major conquest in a week in Syria and Iraq as they pick through the ruins of the historic city of(...)

News that the so-called Islamic State (IS) has captured the ancient and strategic city of Palmyra from Syrian government forces underlines how precari(...)

File photograph of the ancient Palmyra theater in the historical city of Palmyra.   Islamic State fighters in Syria have entered the ancient ruins of Palmyra after taking complete control of the central city. Photograph: Omar Sanadiki/Reuters 1:07

Islamic State (IS) now controls more than half of Syrian territory according to a UK human rights group.The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human(...)

Syrian soldiers at the Temple of Bel, an ancient stone ruin, in Palmyra before it fell to Islamic State. Syrian state television reported tonight that Islamic State, which has  destroyed antiquities and ancient monuments in Iraq, was trying to enter the city’s historical sites. Photograph: Sergey Ponomarev/The New York Times 1:07

Islamic State militants stormed the Syrian city of Palmyra on Wednesday, seizing it from government forces in fierce fighting as civilians were evacua(...)

Iraq’s prime minister Haider al-Abadi. Mr Al-Abadi’s rivals have enjoyed another setback for the prime minister after his failure to retake Anbar province from Islamic State. Photograph: Zach Gibson/The New York Times

The campaign to retake Anbar province from Islamic State was supposed to be Iraqi prime minister Haider al-Abadi’s show. The script went like this: US(...)

 Displaced Iraqis who were forced to flee their hometowns ahead of gains made by Islamic State (IS) militants in Ramadi, western Iraqi, wait near the Bzebiz bridge crossing the Euphrates River on their way to Baghdad at the weekend. Photograph: EPA

The use of Shia militias to try to take back the Iraqi city of Ramadi from Islamic State risks unleashing more sectarian bloodletting, current and for(...)

Iraqi fighters of the Shia militia Asaib Ahl al-Haq (The League of the Righteous) at their headquarters in the southern city of Basra. A spokesman for the force said  militias were mobilised but are being held back by political resistance from the US-led coalition. Photograph: Haidar Mohammed Ali/AFP/Getty Images

Shia militias were mobilising to battle fighters from the Islamic State (IS) in the Iraqi city of Ramadi yesterday as hundreds of residents remained t(...)