Members of the Assyrian Gozarto Protection Forces, consisting of Sutoro militia, a pro-Syrian government Syriac Christian movement, and other Assyrian fighters rest and drink tea before heading to  the front line in the battle against  Islamic State in the northeastern Syrian province of Hasakeh on July 13th. Photograph: Youssef Karwashan/AFP/Getty Images

Islamic State’s reclusive leader has empowered his inner circle of deputies as well as regional commanders in Syria and Iraq with wide-ranging authori(...)

Out of this desperation will IS find a base? .... Palestinian children play in the rubble of houses destroyed during the  Gaza  war between Israel and Hamas militants in the summer of 2014 Photograph: Said Khatib/AFP/Getty Images

One of the more puzzling aspects of the politics of conflict in the Middle East has been the failure of Islamic State to take up the cause of the Pale(...)

Coffins draped with Kuwaiti flags belonging to victims of the Kuwaiti Shia mosque  bombing,  which have been brought to  Najaf, Iraq, for burial. Photograph: jaber al-helo/AP/

A Saudi citizen has been identified by Kuwait as being the suicide bomber who detonated his explosives at a Shia mosque in Kuwait during noon prayers (...)

Iraqi fighters from the Hashed al-Shaabi “popular mobilisation” in al-Nibaie area, northwest of Baghdad.  Photograph: Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty Images

A senior Islamic State figure known as “the blind judge” has made an appearance in the Iraqi city of Ramadi, asserting the militant group’s dominion o(...)

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, above, harshly criticises the Saudi royal family in the message. Photograph: Al-Furqan Media/AFP

The Islamic State group has released an audio message purportedly from its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who has not been seen or heard from in months(...)

US army trainers watch as an Iraqi recruit fires at a military base in Taji, Iraq.They are teaching members of the Iraqi Army, as the Iraqi government tries to recover territory lost to IS last year. Photograph: John Moore/Getty Images

The leader of Islamic State, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, has been seriously wounded in an air strike in western Iraq, according to reports.A source in Iraq (...)

Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan (C) carries a child as he marches  in Abuja on Saturday. Jonathan led government officials as well as leading sports personalities on an outdoor physical training exercise aimed at promoting sports and fitness among state officials and culminating in a rally to drum support for his relection. Presidential elections scheduled for February 14 were delayed for six weeks as the military said the ongoing counter-offensive against Islamist Boko Haram militants meant troops could not provide security on polling day. Elections will take place on March 28th, with gubernatorial and state house assembly polls two weeks later. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Nigeria’s Islamic extremist group Boko Haram has reportedly pledged formal allegiance to Islamic State.The pledge, which came after Boko Haram was dis(...)

A French navy Rafale fighter jet lands on an aircraft craft carrier  following a mission over Iraq.  Coalition air strikes in Iraq have killed at least 23 Islamic State militants and 20 civilians, hospital sources say. Photograph: Patrick Baz/AFP/Getty Images.

The number of Christians abducted by Islamic State in north-eastern Syria has risen to 220, activists say.The militants have picked up dozens more Chr(...)

Nasser bin Ali al-Ansi, a leader of the Yemeni branch of al Qaeda (Aqap), speaks via a video posted on YouTube. Photograph: Reuters/YouTube via Reuters TV 0:47

For Osama bin Laden and Anwar al-Awlaki, al-Qaeda leaders assassinated by the US at a five-month interval in 2011, Wednesday’s claim of responsibilit(...)

Paying their respects: Parisians outside the Charlie Hebdo offices the day after the attack. Photograph: Marc Piasecki/Getty

Each time crusaders triumphed over Muslims in the Middle Ages, bells pealed from the spires of Christendom. The bells of Notre Dame Cathedral tolle(...)