A general view shows the Temple of Bel in the historical city of Palmyra, Syria in October, 2010. Photograph: Omar Sanadiki/Reuters

While residents in the historic city of Palmyra reported a massive explosion in its ancient ruins, the temple of Bel – one of Syria’s most prized trea(...)

Residents cover their noses as they walk past garbage piled up along a street in Beirut, Lebanon, on Wednesday. Photograph:  Mohamed Azakir/Reuters

Six ministers representing the Shia Hizbullah party and three Christian allies on Thursday boycotted an urgent session of the Lebanese government, (...)

Beirut has started to reek as uncollected trash piles up in the streets after protesters shut down Lebanon’s largest landfill at a time of political paralysis. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Protests sparked by a rubbish collection crisis in Lebanon have been postponed after demonstrators and police officers were injured in clashes. Organi(...)

Islamic State militants bulldozing the St Eliane Monastery near the town of Qaryatain. Photograph: Islamic State militant website via AP

Islamic State militants have demolished a monastery in the central Syrian province of Homs, a monitor said on Thursday, in a strategically located tow(...)

 Lebanese Salafist leader Sheikh Ahmad al-Assir: radical cleric tried to flee Beirut in disguise. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Gone was the long, scraggly beard of the fugitive sheikh’s heyday, replaced with the bushy moustache, thick glasses and combover of a 70s actor. Ahmad(...)

The wreckage of  Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 near the village of Hrabove in the Donetsk region of Ukraine. Photograph: Maxim Shemetov/Reuters

Australia, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Belgium and Ukraine have pledged to seek an alternative means of bringing to justice those who shot down Malaysi(...)

A Lebanese woman covers her nose from the smell as she walks on a street partly blocked by piles of garbage in Beirut. Photograph: Hassan Ammar/AP

The sky was blue over Beirut yesterday after clearing had been completed of smouldering mounds of rubbish that had remained in the streets for two wee(...)

Syrian vendors prepare sweets ahead of celebrations of Eid al-Fitr at the al-Jazmatia market in the al-Midan neighbourhood of Damascus. Photograph: Youssef Basawi/EPA

A white stretch limo pulls into the portico of the four-star Dama Rose Hotel, where a bride in full regalia is escorted into the gleaming marble lobby(...)

Turkish riot police truck during clashes with protesters. Photograph: Ulas Yunus tosun/EPA

Syria’s rebels have cast doubt on Turkey’s ambitious plans to confront Islamic State, saying Ankara has yet to provide details of how it will drive ji(...)

Ain Issa is 50km north of Raqqa city.

A Syrian Kurdish militia has recaptured a town that had been stormed by Islamic State fighters earlier this week, just to the north of the jihadist gr(...)