Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman: will by welcomed by president Trump at the start of his visit to the USA. Photograph: Tolga Akmen/AFP/Getty

Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman begins a busy schedule of meetings in USA

Syrian president Bashar al-Assad  talking with government troops in eastern Ghouta in the leader’s first trip to the former rebel enclave outside Damascus in years. Photograph: AFP /  Syrian presidency Facebook page

Exodus continues with number displaced rising above 270,000 in the last week

Syrian president Bashar al-Assad waving at supporters after addressing parliament in Damascus in March 2011. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

While regime changes were made in Egypt and Tunisia, Syria’s conflict is more complex

A Turkey-backed Free Syrian Army soldier with machine gun during an offensive, at Der Mismis Village, southeast of Afrin, Syria, on Tuesday. Photograph: STR/EPA

Thousands flee Turkish military forces and surrogate Free Syrian Army militia

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammad bin Salman is welcomed by British PM Theresa May on the first of his three-day visit to the UK. Photograph: Victoria Jones/PA

London’s weapons deals worth £4.6bn since the war on Yemen launched three years ago

Syrians receive treatment for breathing difficulties at a clinic in Syria’s Eastern Ghouta on March 7th  after regime air strikes which medics said  were consistent with a toxic attack. Photograph: Getty Images

Analysis: Pressure from UN will not stop fighting

Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army fighters carry  a wounded colleague in Afrin, Syria. Photograph: Khalil Ashawi/Reuters

Ankara’s taking of Syrian Kurdish enclave proof of strategic power in embattled region

 A Syrian woman  in a make-shift clinic following reported regime bombardment, in the rebel-held town of Douma, in  the eastern Ghouta region.  Photograph: Hamza Al-Ajweh/AFP/Getty Images

Syrians have little respite since Russia’s limited ceasefire came into effect on Tuesday

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman during the graduation ceremony of the 93rd batch of the cadets of King Faisal Air Academy, in Riyadh  on February 21st. Photograph:  Bandar Algaloud/Saudi Royal Court/Reuters

Shake-up of armed forces aimed at tightening Crown Prince Mohammed’s grip on power

Syria Civil Defence members help an unconscious woman from a shelter in the besieged town of Douma, Eastern Ghouta, Damascus, Syria, on Thursday. Photograph: Bassam Khabieh/Reuters

Analysis: Gulf powers have interests in eastern Ghouta that are not humanitarian

A Syrian man holds a wounded child at a makeshift hospital in the rebel-held town of Douma, following air strikes by regime forces on the besieged eastern Ghouta region on the outskirts of Damascus. Photograph: Hamza Al-Ajweh/Getty Images

Why Syria's government is bombing east of Damascus, and Turkey's role in the north

 A Syrian man carries an injured boy as he walks on rubble of damaged buildings in the rebel-held besieged town of Hamouriyeh, eastern Ghouta. Over 300 people have been killed in the last four days. Photograph:  Reuters

Four days of intensive bombing has left at least 310 people dead in rebel enclave

Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army fighters  hold  weapons aloft near the city of Afrin, Syria, on Monday. Photograph: Khalil Ashawi/Reuters

Families in enclave near Damascus subsist on one meal a day since army tightened siege

People walk on rubble of damaged buildings after an airstrike in the besieged town of Douma in eastern Ghouta in Damascus, Syria. Photograph: Reuters

Air strikes are the most serious confrontation between the US and Russia since Moscow intervened in the conflict in 2015

The remains of a Russian Sukhoi Su-25 fighter jet in Ma’saran village near Saraqeb city, in eastern Idlib, Syria. Photograph: Abdalla Saad/EPA

Regional powers have supplied shoulder-fired missiles

Left wing-backed independent Stavros Malas shakes hands with Nicos Anastasiades of the right wing Democratic Rally party in Nicosia, Cyprus. Photograph: Yiannis Kourtoglou

Nicos Anastasiades up against Akel party-backed Stavros Malas in tight run-off

The Saudi government had, reportedly, demanded $6 billion from  Alwaleed bin Talal, whose worth is estimated at $17 billion. Photograph: Katie Paul/Reuters

Move popular with public who are tired of big-spending princes

Supporters of Egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi celebrate in Tahrir square in Cairo on the seventh anniversary of the uprising that ended the 30-year reign of Hosni Mubarak. Photograph: Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Reuters

Seventh anniversary sees hopes of freedom crushed as al-Sisi in line for second term

Palestinian schoolgirls attend a class at a school belonging to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (Unrwa)  in Gaza City on Monday. Photograph: Mahmud Hams/AFP/Getty Images

Emergency appeal by Unrwa after Trump administration says it will withhold $300m

Turkish tanks  advance near the Syria border as Turkey  shelled Kurdish militia targets in Syria and claimed progress in a cross-border offensive that has raised concern among its allies and neighbours. Photograph: Bulent Kilic/Getty Images

Turkey challenging Nato partners and ramping up regional tensions with neighbours

US secretary of state Rex Tillerson  said the Trump administration would maintain its military presence in Syria  to prevent Islamic State’s resurgence, press for the ousting of President Bashar al-Assad, and counter Iranian influence. Photograph: Ben Nelms/Reuters

Planned 30,000-strong Kurdish border force makes little sense and is widely opposed

 Palestinian women   at a   UN Relief and Works Agency (Unrwa)-run clinic in  Gaza: The agency   provides support for 5,266,603 registered refugees. Photograph:  Mahmud Hams/AFP/Getty

Move to withhold €53m from UN agency may cause wide repercussions in region

 Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas: has called for a review of all agreements reached by the PLO and Israel. Photograph: Alaa Badarneh

By dismissing 1993 accord, Mahmoud Abbas could override agreement favouring Israel

Syrian Christians take part in a Christmas mass at a destroyed church in Raqa, the former ‘capital’ of the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria, on January 9th. Photograph: Delil Souleiman/AFP/Getty Images

The offensive has been criticised, but the government cannot afford to give up the province

A Turkish Cypriot man casts his ballot for the parliamentary election at a polling station in the self-proclaimed Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, which is only recognised by Turkey. Photograph: Birol Bebek/AFP/Getty

Right-wing coalition on cards as Turkish Cypriots back status quo cautiously

Children roll tyres along the Israeli separation wall in the East Jerusalem refugee camp of Shuafat on January 3rd. Photograph: Ammar Awad/Reuters

Halting $368m in aid to UN agency Unrwa would be major blow to services for refugees

Iran’s president Hassan Rouhani: the protests should not be viewed as a threat but as an opportunity. Photograph: Iran’s presidential official website/EPA

Scattered wave of social dissatisfaction arises from Iranians’ sense of governmental neglect

A Yemeni student inspects the site of alleged Saudi-led air strikes at a memorial of Egyptian soldiers, in Sana’a, Yemen. Photograph: Yahya Arhab/EPA

Western powers profit from kingdom’s offensive while 20 million Yemenis require aid

Syrian Red Crescent Syrian staff evacuate a babyfrom the eastern Ghouta district on the outskirts of Damascus. Photograph: Abdulmonam Eassa/AFP/Getty Images

Red Crescent to move 29 from eastern Ghouta to Damascus following Assad approval

Arab League secretary general Ahmed Aboul Gheit  and Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Malki: eight Palestinians have been killed and nearly 500 arrested by Israel since Donald Trump declared his shift of policy on Jerusalem. Photograph: Mohamed el-Shahed/AFP/Getty

Riyad al-Malki claims US bullying countries not recognising Jerusalem as Israel’s capital

An anti-corruption drive started by Saudi Arabia’s defence minister Prince Mohamed bin Salman has led to more than  200  arrests.  Photograph: Getty

Sabih al-Masri’s family received Irish passports under the ‘passport for sale’ scheme

Palestinians walk on a poster bearing images of US president Donald Trump and vice-president Mike Pence during a demonstration at the al-Quds Open University in Dura village near the West Bank town of Hebron on Wednesday. Photograph: Hazem Bader/AFP/Getty Images

US vice-president told he will be pelted with shoes if he visits West Bank or East Jerusalem

An Israeli undercover policeman arrests a Palestinian protester in the West Bank town of Ramallah during a protest against the US decision to recognise Jerusalem as capital of Israel. Photograph: Shadi Hatem

Trump recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital hardens Recep Tayyip Erdogan stance

Syrian president Bashar al-Assad (in camouflage) with Russian president Vladimir Putin and defence minister Sergei Shoigu (both suited) visiting an  air base in Latakia Province, Syria, on  December 11. Photograph: Mikhail Klimentyev/Sputnik

Vladimir Putin satisfied Islamic State has been beaten on both banks of Euphrates

Religious conflict: Palestinians paint over Donald Trump’s face on the Israeli separation wall in Bethlehem, in the West Bank. Photograph: Abed al-Hashlamoun/EPA

Analysis: Recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital demolishes 70 years of US policy

Jamil’s mother Leila, and sister Carla, walking in a square in Greece en route to Germany in 2014.

Family grateful for ‘protection’ offered by Germany – but they long for Damascus

Palestinians burn posters depicting Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu and US pesident Donald Trump during a protest against the US intention to recognise the city of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip on Wednesday. Photograph:  Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters

Muslims the world over repeatedly angered by US president’s Middle East policies

A boy sells grilled corn near cars damaged during recent clashes between Houthi fighters and forces loyal to Yemen’s former president Ali Abdullah Saleh in Sana’a, Yemen, on Tuesday.  Photograph: Khaled Abdullah/Reuters

Violence in deadlocked conflict expected to intensify in short-term as millions suffer

Ultra Orthodox Jews look at the city of Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives. Photograph: Thomas Coex/AFP/Getty Images

Fate of East Jerusalem meant to be decided in talks between Palestinians and Israelis

Pierre Krähenbühl, UNWRA commissioner general: “I hear confirmation of the two-state solution but there is no decisive action. I feel more can be done to bring about a solution.”

Failure to create a ‘political horizon’ can only increase Palestinian suffering and instability

An Iraqi woman, carrying an infant, walks by the destroyed al-Nuri Mosque as she flees from the Old City of Mosul on July 5, 2017. Photograph: Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty

Isis members escaping from Syria and Iraq a danger to Europe, says Egypt’s president

 Lebanese prime minister Saad Hariri speaks to his supporters at his home at downtown Beirut, Lebanon, after returning from Saudi Arabia. Hariri, who had recently announced his resignation, said he would temporarily refrain from stepping down from office at the behest of the country’s president. Photograph: Wael Hamzeh/EPA

Resignation postponed: Mystery still shrouds PM’s two-week sojourn in Saudi Arabia

 Russian president Vladimir Putin and Syrian president Bashar al-Assad hug at a meeting in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, Russia on Monday. Photograph: Mikhail Klimentyev, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP

Signs that moderates among Saudi-backed opposition are winning ahead of Geneva talks

A malnourished Yemeni child receives treatment amid worsening malnutrition in the emergency ward of a hospital in Sana’a, Yemen, on Wednesday. Photograph: Yahya Arhab/EPA

‘Worst humanitarian crisis in the world’ deteriorating over closure of ports and airports

Heavily damaged buildings in Raqa on October 21st, 2017, after a Kurd-led force expelled the jihadists from the northern Syrian city. There are claims many were transported out. Photograph: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty

‘Raqqa’s Dirty Secret’ says 250 fighters with families and arms were given safe passage

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who  many in Lebanon have no doubt is the prime mover of Hariri’s resignation.  Photograph:  Saudi Press Agency/via Reuters

Lebanese cabinet to defy Riyadh and carry on without prime minister

Pro-government Syrian troops taking up positions during fighting with insurgents near Boukamal, on the Iraq-Syria border, November 8th, 2017. Videograb: Syrian Central Military Media/AP

Government, opposition factions and other actors jostle for advantage ahead of peace talks

Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman: The abrupt clampdown on corruption could exacerbate criticism of other risky policies he has adopted. Photograph:  Presidency Press Service/Pool Photo via AP

Arrest of senior figures in corruption drive stuns kingdom and creates risks for prince

Toumeh ‘Tommy’ Toumeh (91): The Toumehs were the only Christian family to remain in al-Waer. Before the war there had been 300 Christian families and two churches in the Homs suburb. Photograph: Michael Jansen

‘Tommy’ Toumeh, 91, faced down armed fighters who told him to leave his home in 2014

Ghassan Jansiz in his bookshop in Homs. Photograph: Michael Jansen

Couple’s English-language bookshop part of efforts to preserve Syria’s built heritage

Aleppo regeneration: solar-powered street lights in damaged eastern zone. Photograph: Michael Jansen

Commercial and leisure activities return to Syrian city as half a million people drift back

At an abandoned factory at Deir al-Zor, the army displays thousands of weapons captured from Islamic State here and in the town of Mayadin, to the south.

Cruel ‘caliphate’ of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi on skids amid Syrian army and Kurdish squeeze

Wafa Mahmoud Yusif and her son Walid, with a photograph of her elder son, who was killed in the Syrian war. Photograph: Michael Jansen

Syria’s rehabilitation is under way, but the pace varies greatly between city, town and village

Fatah’s Azzam al-Ahmad (right), head of the Fatah delegation, and Fatah colleague Rawhi Fattouh (second right),  after signing a Fatah-Hamas reconciliation deal in Cairo today after the two rival Palestinian movements ended their decade-long split following negotiations overseen by Egypt. Photograph: Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Images

Both Palestinian organisations pressured from all sides at a time of extreme weakness

Members of Syrian Democratic Forces hold a flag of the Islamic State militants recovered at a building next to the stadium in Raqqa, Syria. Photograph: Reuters/Erik De Castro

In Iraq and Syria the terrorist group has lost most of its territory and, with it, its power

Hamas’s overall leader Ismail Haniya waves as he arrives for a meeting with Palestinian officials in Gaza City. Photograph: Said Khatib/AFP/Getty Images

Rival Palestinian movements attempt to reconcile after 10 years of open hostility

King Salman: Syria, Iran, oil and expanding commercial ties on the agenda. Photograph:  Bandar al-Jaloud/AFP/Getty Images

King Salman embarks on three-day visit to Moscow as part of major policy shift

Russian  sappers clearing the historic city of Palmyra of mines after it was recaptured from Isis. Photograph: TASS via Getty Images

Second anniversary of Kremlin decision to back Assad with military might

Wheels of progress?: from June 2018 women will be able to get a driving licence without a male relative’s permission  and to drive without a male relative in the car. Photograph: Fayez Nureldine/AFP/Getty

The kingdom’s women look set to be kept away from the wheels of power

Kurds celebrate to show their support for the independence referendum in Duhok, Iraq, September 26th, 2017. Photograph: Ari Jalal/Reuters

Baghdad believes talks would prompt Sunni areas to renew demand for autonomy

Shoppers at the al-Qaysareyah market in Kirkuk, Iraq, ahead of the Kurdish independence vote. Photograph: Ivor Prickett/The New York Times

Baghdad issues threats and international powers condemn the ballot ahead of the vote

A recent photo from  the Saudi Royal Palace  shows Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (32) at a meeting with a Yemeni delegation in Jeddah. File photograph: Bandar Al-Jaloud/AFP/Getty Images

Crown prince Mohamed bin Salman highly sensitive to dissent as his policies are failing

  UN special envoy  for Syria Staffan de Mistura: hopes progress can be achieved in talks between the Syrian government and militants  in Geneva after ceasefires have been agreed in Kazakhstan. Photograph: Martial Trezzini/EPA

Negotiators hope to extend ‘deconfliction’ zones during sixth conference in Kazakhstan

Syrians walk in the street in Deir al-Zor after Syria’s army broke a years-long Islamic State siege on the government enclave. Photograph: Stringer/AFP/Getty Images

Bashar al-Assad praises troops amid continued push to drive Islamic State from the city

Al-Ayadieh village, the last remaining active front line near Tal Afar, during an operation to retake the city from Islamic State. Photograph: Ahmad al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty Images

Confusion and uncertainty reign as political, ethnic and hidden agendas play out

Muslims praying at the Grand Mosque ahead of the annual hajj pilgrimage in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, on Tuesday. Photograph: Suhaib Salem/Reuters

World’s most multicultural religious event gets under way in Saudi Arabia

Saudi’s defence minister Mohammed bin Salman attending a military parade by Saudi security forces ahead of the annual Hajj pilgrimage in the holy city of Mecca. Photograph:  Bandar Al-Jaloud/AFP/Getty Images

Some 86,000 Iranian pilgrims to attend annual Hajj for the first time in two years

Spanish Minister of Interior, Juan Ignacio Zoido, shows a picture of alleged terrorist Younes Abouyaaqoub, identified as the driver of the van in the Barcelona attack.  Photograph: EPA

Well-developed networks are targeting young Moroccans to join terrorist cells

A veiled woman sits  on a bench near an installation of wedding dresses by Lebanese artist Mireille Honein and Abaad activist organisation  at Beirut’s corniche in April. The installation was a criticism of Lebanon’s law allowing rapists who married their victims to go free. Photograph:   Patrick Baz/AFP/Getty Images

‘Overdue’ move welcomed to scrap 1940s law allowing rapists avoid prosecution through marriage

A member of the Syrian Democratic Forces calls his comrades during the fighting with Islamic State fighters in Raqqa, Syria, on  August 14th. Photograph: Zohra Bensemra/Reuters

US and Iran-backed Iraqi forces are on outskirts of Isis-held Tal Afar, west of Mosul

Remains of a car and buildings are seen following a security campaign against Shi’ite Muslim gunmen in the town of Awamiya, in the eastern part of Saudi Arabia. Photograph: Faisal Al Nasser/Reuters

Fears for heritage of 400-year-old Shia town Awamiya after destruction and violence

Carla del Ponte, who has resigned from the UN commission investigating war crimes and violence against civilians in Syria. Photograph: Martial Trezzini/Keystone/ AP

Carla del Ponte blames lack of backing from Security Council to try perpetrators

 A cholera-infected child receives treatment at a makeshift tent at a hospital in  Yemen. Photograph: EPA/Yahya Arhab

Infection rate continues to rise as deliveries of medical supplies restricted

Syrian refugees arrive in Wadi Hamayyed, on the outskirts of Lebanon’s northeastern border town of Arsal, to board buses bound for the northwestern Syrian town of Idlib on Wednesday, August 2nd. Photograph: Stringer/AFP/Getty

Transport of 8,000 refugees resumes after Jabhat Fatah al-Sham demands met by Hizbullah

Saudi  crown prince Mohammed bin Salman: under house arrest in his mansion in Jeddah and banned from travelling abroad. Photograph: Saudi Press Agency via The New York Times

Human Rights Watch urges authorities to explain Mohammed bin Nayef’s travel ban

Fighters loyal to al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate, Tahrir al-Sham (then known as Jabhat al-Nusra) and its allies smash a statue of the late Syrian president Hafez al-Assad in Idlib in March 2015. Photograph: Sami Ali/AFP/Getty

Tahrir al-Sham advance may lead to re-establishment of al-Qaeda in Syria and Iraq

A Free Syrian Army fighter holds a walkie-talkie as he sits with a fellow member in al-Manshiyeh neighbourhood in Deraa, Syria. Photograph: Alaa Al-Faqir/Reuters

CIA programme to topple Syrian president Bashar al-Assad has been deemed a failure

Saudi King, Salman bin Abdel Aziz (right) meeting with US secretary of state Rex Tillerson  in July. Photograph: EPA/Saudi Press Agency

Sunni council has always had divisions but numerous disputes could pull it apart

A Palestinian  sits outside his shop on Tuesday this week during the few hours of mains electricity the residents of the Gaza Strip enjoy every day. Photograph: Mahmud Hams/AFP/Getty Images

Population of 2 million ‘seeing faster and faster decline in their living conditions’

Displaced Iraqi women rest in the desert as they wait to be transported in western Mosul, Iraq. Photograph: Reuters/Zohra Bensemra

Defeat of Islamic State in Mosul must be followed by emergency relief, security and medical care

A woman holds her injured child at a camp for people displaced from fighting in the Islamic State stronghold of Raqqa, in Ain Issa, Syria June 14, 2017. REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic

UN war crimes investigators accused the US and allied Kurdish-dominated DemocraticForces of being responsible for a 'staggering lo(...)

US president Donald Trump and the then Saudi  Defence minister, and now crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman,  in the  White House in March. Photograph: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images

Move comes as the kingdom faces multiple challenges, including rift with Qatar

Former Israeli soldier and critic of Israeli policies, Avner Gvaryahu, is a spokesman with Breaking the Silence, a movement of Israeli soldiers opposed to the occupation of Palestinian territories.  Photograph: Quique Kierszenbaum

Ex-staff sergeant: ‘There is violence on both sides, but Palestinians always pay the price’

An Israeli soldier keeps watch as the children of Israeli settlers play outside the Abraham Avinu settlement in the divided West Bank city of Hebron on May 29th. Photograph: Menahem Kahana/AFP/Getty

Recognition of Israel rubs against call for end to bulldozers clearing land for settlements

Palestinian Muslim worshippers attend the second Friday prayers of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan at Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa mosque compound on June 9th, 2017. Photograph:  Ahmad Gharabli/aFP/Getty Images

‘Tens of thousands come to pray in the lead-domed al-Aqsa mosque, the world’s third holiest Islamic site’

A shop vendor sells vegetables at a market in the old city of the West bank town of Hebron. The IMF reports the Palestinian economy has grown by 3 per cent annually over the last few years. Photograph: Abed al-Hashlamoun

Consumerism is rampant, but economic gap between Palestinians and Israelis is widening

Nabil Shaath, former Palestinian foreign minister,  with then taoiseach Bertie Ahern in 2004. Mr Shaath argues the US could have achieved a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict when the global balance of power shifted in Washington’s favour after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989-90. Photograph: The Irish Times

Despite 16 years of failed negotiations and lost opportunities, the creation of a Palestinian state alongside Israel still has wid(...)

Israeli air force fighters over the Sinai peninsula on the first day of the Six Day war. On the morning of June 5th, 1967, Israeli planes destroyed the entire Egyptian air force on the ground. Photograph: AFP Photo

Lives were changed forever on June 5th, 1967, as Israel’s air force won the war in hours

Supporters of Iranian president Hassan Rouhani celebrate after he won the presidential election on May 20th, 2017 in Tehran, Iran. Photograph: Majid Saeedi/Getty Images

Isolating Iran empowers ultra-conservatives and confirm their view of US as ‘Great Satan’

A giant billboard bearing portraits of American president Donald Trump and Saudi Arabia’s King Salman in Riyadh. Photograph: Giuseppe Cacace/AFP/Getty

As both sides aim to revive relations, serious differences remain on Iran and Islamic State

 Iranian president and candidate in the imminent presidential election, Hassan Rouhani, at Hasheminejad international airport in the northeastern city of Mashhad on May 17th, 2017.  Photograph: Behrouz Mehri/AFP/Getty Images

Contest between moderate incumbent Hassan Rouhani and hardliner Ebrahim Raisi

Staffan de Mistura, the UN special envoy for Syria,  before the resumption of negotiations between the Syrian government and the opposition,  in Geneva, on Monday. Photograph: Salvatore Di Nolfi/EPA

As latest round of talks opens in Geneva two presidents meet at the White House

Regaining control of the oil-producing province of Deir al-Zor from Isis and Syria’s eastern border with Iraq are essential if Syrian president Bashar al-Assad is to achieve his   goal of reuniting Syria. Photograph: Getty Images

Analysis: Stabilisation will allow Damascus to mount campaign against Islamic State

Cypriot president Nicos Anastasiades insists  talks on Cypriot reunification should remain “Cypriot-owned”. Photograph: Yiannis Kourtoglou/Reuters

UN chief issues proposals to bridge gap between Greek and Turkish Cypriots

A Syrian man rides a horse cart in a rebel-held area of Maaret al-Numan, in the country’s northern province of Idlib. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Next stage of ceasefire deal involves determining boundaries of the four zones controlled by insurgent forces

UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura (left) shakes hands with Russian mediator Alexander Lavrentiev at the fourth round of Syria peace talks taking place in Astana, Kazakhstan.  Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Russia urges halt to fighting, freezing of front lines at four locations in war-torn country

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan  has rejoined the ruling AKP  after a nearly three-year absence. Photograph: Adem Altan/AFP/Getty Images

Turkish president dismantling country’s secularism, which will alienate liberal Turks

The new leader of Hamas movement in Gaza Strip, Yahya Sinwar (left) and Hamas senior leader Sheikh Ismaeil Haneiya   during a news conference in Doha, Qatar, announcing the new Hamas policy document. Photograph: EPA/Mohammed Saber

As the 50th anniversary of the Israeli occupation of Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem approaches, Fatah and Hamas are under (...)

 King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud: expected to boost the kingdom’s relationship with the Trump administration following its decline under  Barack Obama. Photograph:  Bandar Al-Jaloud/AFP/Getty Images

Appointments and decrees include naming of king’s son Khaled as ambassador to US

Nujeen Mustafa and her sister Nasrine near the Serbia-Croatia border in  September 2015. Photograph: AFP/Getty

The Girl From Aleppo review: Teenager Nujeen Mustafa finds her voice on a heroic journey

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