Islamic State

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), officially known as the Islamic State (IS) and by its Arabic language acronym Daesh, is a Salafi jihadist militant group and former unrecognised proto-state that follows a fundamentalist, Salafi doctrine of Sunni Islam.
Read up on the latest news and discussion about the radical militant group.
  • Iraq celebrates victory over Islamic State while grappling with legacy
    BostonGlobe.com

    Iraq celebrates victory over Islamic State while grappling with legacy

    Iraq began removing cement walls from areas surrounding the capital's most fortified enclave Monday, opening parts of the so-called Green Zone to traffic in a symbolic move coinciding with nationwide celebrations marking the anniversary of the country's costly victory over the Islamic State group. The partial reopening of parts of the high-security area is meant to portray increased confidence in the country's overall security situation and is also being billed as an act of transparency following protests against corruption and poor public services. The enclave on the west bank of the Tigris became home to foreign embassies and key government buildings after the US-led invasion of 2003 and has since then been surrounded by blast walls and barbed wire, inaccessible to most Iraqis. The partial reopening of some side streets — initially just for five hours a day — has been repeatedly delayed and then timed to coincide with the one year anniversary of Iraq's victory over the Islamic State.

  • DOJ: Ohio man charged in planned attack on synagogue in name of Islamic State
    WKYC Cleveland

    DOJ: Ohio man charged in planned attack on synagogue in name of Islamic State

    Federal terrorism charges were unsealed Monday against a 21-year-old Ohio man accused in a planned attack against a Toledo synagogue that was allegedly inspired by the Islamic State terror group. Damon M. Joseph, charged with one count of attempting to provide material support  to the Islamic State, was arrested late Friday after allegedly praising the October attack on a Pittsburgh synagogue and taking possession of two semi-automatic rifles from an undercover FBI agent. As part of the sting operation, the rifles had been rendered inoperable before they were allegedly turned over to Joseph and presented no threat, federal authorities said. Investigators were drawn to Joseph earlier this year,

  • Columbus Telegram

    US-backed Syrian fighters push into Islamic State-held town

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  • Is Boko Haram's notorious leader about to return from the dead again?
    African Arguments

    Is Boko Haram's notorious leader about to return from the dead again?

    Two years ago, Islamic State expelled Shekau from its West Africa “province” for being too hard-line. Is it preparing to reverse course?  Since 2009, when Boko Haram first launched its insurgency, the group's most recognisable leader has been Abubakar Shekau. The notorious leader has featured in countless videos, boasting of his invincibility, taking credit for attacks, denouncing the West, and mocking the Nigerian government. His image has become so familiar that when his face looked a little different in some short and blurry 2013 videos, analysts immediately called it out as being the work of an imposter. Shekau is also well-known for repeatedly defying news of his death. On multiple occasions

  • Cocaine Smugglers May Cash in on Guinea-Bissau Politics Feud
    Bloomberg

    Cocaine Smugglers May Cash in on Guinea-Bissau Politics Feud

    Today the only sign of the crisis is an armored vehicle of African peacekeepers next to the Portuguese colonial palace home of President Jose Mario Vaz, who’s involved in a bitter power struggle with his own party, known as PAIGC, and has fired six prime ministers since he took power in 2014. The political deadlock prompted foreign donors to suspend at least $1.2 billion in aid and weakened a state plagued by rampant corruption. “A prolongation of the crisis will certainly limit our ability to stop smugglers,” Cipriano Cassama, the head of the National Popular Assembly legislature and potential presidential contender, said in an interview.

  • ABC News

    UN Syria envoy: Work ongoing for constitutional committee

    The U.N. Special envoy for Syria said Monday work is still ongoing to form a committee meant to draft a new constitution before the end of the year, adding that hurdles remain in place. Staffan de Mistura made his comments in Jordan after meeting Minister of Foreign Affairs Ayman Safadi who said that Jordan's "firm position" is that a political solution must be found, and "destruction and killing must be stopped in order for Syria to be recovered and to restore its role as a cornerstone in the region." Last month, Syria's warring sides and mediators meeting in Kazakhstan failed to agree on the formation of a constitutional committee which is key to ending the seven-year civil war. De Mistura

  • After defeat in Iraq, IS fights on in last enclave in Syria
    San Francisco Chronicle

    After defeat in Iraq, IS fights on in last enclave in Syria

    BAGHDAD (AP) — A year after it was routed from Iraq in a devastating war that left entire neighborhoods and towns in ruins, the Islamic State group is fighting to hang on to its last enclave in eastern Syria, engaging in deadly battles with U.S.-backed forces. Cornered in the desert near the Iraqi border with nowhere to run, the militants are putting up a fierce fight, inflicting hundreds of casualties among their opponents and releasing a stream of beheading videos reminiscent of the extremist group's terrifying propaganda at the height of its power. In Syria, the battle for the area of Hajin has dragged on for three months, highlighting the difficulty of eradicating an extremist group determined

  • USA TODAY

    DOJ: Ohio man charged in planned attack on synagogue in name of Islamic State

    Federal terrorism charges were unsealed against an Ohio man accused in a planned attack against a Toledo synagogue that was allegedly inspired by the Islamic State terror group.

  • Iraq celebrates anniversary of defeating Islamic State
    The Christian Science Monitor

    Iraq celebrates anniversary of defeating Islamic State

    Iraq on Monday celebrated the anniversary of its costly victory over the Islamic State group, which has lost virtually all the territory it once held but still carries out sporadic attacks to hang on to its last enclave in Syria near the Iraqi border. The government declared victory last December after a grueling three-year war in which tens of thousands of people were killed and hundreds of thousands displaced. Entire towns and neighborhoods were reduced to rubble in the fighting. The government declared Monday a national holiday, and a moment of silence is planned for later in the day. Checkpoints in the capital were decorated with Iraqi flags and balloons, as security forces patrolled the

  • Battered ISIS Keeps Grip on Last Piece of Territory for Over a Year
    WRAL.com

    Battered ISIS Keeps Grip on Last Piece of Territory for Over a Year

    Posted 6:48 p.m. todayUpdated 6:54 p.m. today LONDON — The Islamic State group has been stripped of nearly all the territory it ruled in Iraq and Syria and has been pummeled by nearly 30,000 airstrikes. But the extremist group has managed to retain a small pocket of land on the Syria-Iraq border for more than a year. The militants have on occasion struck back with some of their former vigor from their toehold, around the Syrian town of Hajin in Deir el-Zour province. In the last week of November, they staged a breakout from the Hajin pocket, attacking the U.S.-allied Syrian Democratic Forces in the Syrian town of Gharanij, which those forces had captured a year earlier. The breakout on Nov. 24

  • Official: Roadside bomb kills 3 civilians in Afghanistan
    San Francisco Chronicle

    Official: Roadside bomb kills 3 civilians in Afghanistan

    KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A civilian vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb Saturday, killing three civilians in western Herat province, a provincial official said. Gelani Farhad, the provincial governor's spokesman, said the three — who were from the same family — were killed in the Guzra district. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but Farhad blamed Taliban insurgents who are active in the area. In eastern Nangarhar province, three members of the Islamic State group were arrested during a military operation in Bahsud district, said Attahullah Khogyani, spokesman for the provincial governor. Khogyani said one of three is a member of the group's press department who had responsibility

  • Where the Terrorists Will Strike Next
    Bloomberg

    Where the Terrorists Will Strike Next

    It seems strange question to ask 17 years after President George W. Bush told Americans we were at war with it. Or consider Yemen’s Houthi rebels — in truth a self-governing tribal group now in control the capital city of a failed state. Adding to the semantic farrago are killers who fall under that old American cliche: the nut with a gun. The 1995 Oklahoma City bombing is invariably called the worst act of domestic terrorism in U.S. history, but there’s no evidence Timothy McVeigh ever belonged to any far-right group.

  • After defeat in Iraq, Islamic State fights on in last enclave in Syria
    Chicago Tribune

    After defeat in Iraq, Islamic State fights on in last enclave in Syria

    A year after it was routed from Iraq in a devastating war that left entire neighborhoods and towns in ruins, the Islamic State group is fighting to hang on to its last enclave in eastern Syria, engaging in deadly battles with U.S.-backed forces. Cornered in the desert near the Iraqi border with nowhere to run, the militants are putting up a fierce fight, inflicting hundreds of casualties among their opponents and releasing a stream of beheading videos reminiscent of the extremist group's terrifying propaganda at the height of its power. In Syria, the battle for the area of Hajin has dragged on for three months, highlighting the difficulty of eradicating an extremist group determined to survive. Across the border, in Iraq, there is rising concern that the group may stage a comeback.

  • Iraq celebrates victory over IS while grappling with legacy
    Associated Press

    Iraq celebrates victory over IS while grappling with legacy

    BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq began removing cement walls from areas surrounding the capital's most fortified enclave Monday, opening parts of the so-called Green Zone to traffic in a symbolic move coinciding with nationwide celebrations marking the anniversary of the country's costly victory over the Islamic State group.