Special forces  in Mosul, Iraq, where Sunni  residents fear Iraqi Shia soldiers   might take  revenge for Mosul’s capitulation to Islamic State in 2014. Photograph:   Muhammad Hamed/Reuters

The people of Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa in Syria are eagerly but fearfully awaiting liberation from Islamic State. Under its brutal rule, they face tax(...)

Iraqi rapid response forces fire mortar shells towards Islamic State positions in the Wahda district of eastern Mosul, Iraq, on Friday. Photograph: Alaa Al-Marjani/Reuters

Iraqi troops entered Mosul from the north for the first time on Friday, part of a new phase in the battle to retake the city from the Islamic State t(...)

Displaced Iraqi children, who fled Falluja because of Islamic State violence, at a camp on the outskirts of the city this summer. Amnesty International says some of those fleeing Falluja were subjected to human rights abuses by security forces and Popular Mobilisation Units comprised of mainly Shia militias. Photograph: Reuters

Amnesty International has accused Iraqi government forces of compounding civilian sufferings inflicted by Islamic State by committing war crimes and s(...)

Iraqi forces hold positions about 45km south of Mosul on October 17th. Some 30,000 federal troops are leading the offensive against Islamic State, backed by air and ground support from a US-led coalition. Photograph: Ahmad al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty Images

After two years scraping back territory lost in a humiliating defeat to Islamic State, Iraqi forces are now advancing on the city where the drama all (...)

Iraq’s prime minister Haider al-Abadi speaks on state TV on Sunday as he announces the start of an offensive to retake Mosul from Islamic State. Photoghraph: Office of Iraqi prime minister

Preparing for the battle to drive Islamic State from Mosul has taken Baghdad and its problematic allies more than 30 months since the Iraqi army’s hu(...)

Iraqi security forces are preparing for an offensive that could be days or weeks away. Photograph: Reuters

Kurdish peshmerga, the Iraqi army’s elite special operations units, Sunni tribal levees and Shia militias have been marshalling forces ahead of the lo(...)

A British soldier secures an area near the burning oil export pipeline – from the southern city of Basra, 500km from Baghdad, to the Faw peninsula on the Gulf – in March 2004, in the Maamer zone 100km further south of Basra. Photograph: Joseph Barrak/AFP/Getty Images

The 2003 US-British invasion of Iraq was a war the world did not want. Millions of people protested around the world in the run-up to the war. Among (...)

 Iraqi men mourn over a body after they lost five members of their family in a suicide bombing that ripped through Baghdad’s busy shopping district of Karrada. Photograph: Haidar Hamdanihaidar/Getty Images

The death toll from Sunday’s devastating truck bombing in Baghdad has risen to 149, Iraqi authorities said, as prime minister Haider al-Abadi ordered (...)

Displaced Iraqi children, who fled from Falluja because of Islamic State violence, are seen at a camp on the outskirts of Falluja, Iraq: recent arrivals suffer extreme temperatures without shelter in the desert. Photograph: Reuters/Stringer

The United Nations has warned that Iraqi civilians fleeing fighting in Falluja between government forces and Islamic State fighters lack water, food a(...)

Iraq’s prime minister Haider al-Abadi has to prevent a massacre of residents and the devastation of the city. Photograph: Alaa Al-Marjani/Reuters.

Iraqi forces encircling Islamic State fighters in Sunni majority Falluja are all sectarian, making the battle for this strategic city a major test for(...)

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