U.S. believes Iran launched air raids on Islamic State in Iraq

Dec 4, 2014

U.S. believes Iran launched air raids on Islamic State in Iraq

The United States has indications that Iran has carried out airstrikes on Islamic State targets in Iraq in recent days, U.S. officials said on Wednesday. A senior Iranian official denied that Iran had launched any such strikes. U.S. officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, ...

Dec 3, 2014

Islamic State leader's wife, son detained: Lebanon

Lebanese authorities detained a suspected wife and young son of the Islamic State group’s leader, and were questioning the woman and conducting DNA tests on the boy, two senior Lebanese officials said Tuesday. Both officials refused to give further details about the woman believed ...

Dec 2, 2014

Kurds deny Canadian-Israeli woman captured by Islamic State militants

A Kurdish official in Syria denied Monday previous reports that Canadian-Israeli Gill Rosenberg was captured by militants from the Islamic State group and a Facebook message on her page read “I’m totally safe and secure.” Rosenberg, 31, a civil aviation pilot who enlisted in ...

Dec 1, 2014

Iraq discovers it has 50,000 'ghost troops'

Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi on Sunday announced that an investigation has uncovered the existence of 50,000 “ghost soldiers,” and promised a widening crackdown on corruption. “The prime minister revealed the existence of 50,000 fictitious names” in the military, according to a statement from al-Abadi’s ...

Dec 1, 2014

Failing oil prices force rethink of 2015 budget, Iraq says

Falling oil prices have forced Iraq to scrap the draft 2015 budget it planned to present to parliament on Sunday, Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi told lawmakers. The budget had been based on a forecast oil price of $70 a barrel, but prices dropped to ...

For Syrian rebels, push forward in south yields rare success

Nov 29, 2014

For Syrian rebels, push forward in south yields rare success

Syrian rebels backed by the United States are making their biggest gains yet south of the capital Damascus, capturing a string of towns from government forces and aiming to carve out a swath of territory leading to the doorstep of President Bashar Assad’s seat ...

In devastated Kobani, sense of optimism takes hold

Nov 29, 2014

In devastated Kobani, sense of optimism takes hold

Blocks of low-rise buildings with hollow facades, shattered concrete, streets strewn with rubble and overturned, crumpled remains of cars and trucks. Such is the landscape in Kobani, where the sounds of rifle and mortar fire resonate all day long in fighting between Islamic State ...

For 700 migrants, harrowing sail ends in Greece

Nov 28, 2014

For 700 migrants, harrowing sail ends in Greece

Hour after hour, the coast guard boats shuttled from the crippled freighter to a concrete pier, discharging a steady flow of humanity: Families with small children, black-clad elderly women, battered-looking youths with backpacks. For more than 700 migrants, most of them fleeing the conflict ...

Nov 27, 2014

Iraqi forces battle Islamic State jihadists in Ramadi, Kirkuk

Iraqi security forces and allied tribesmen were battling Wednesday to defend the governor’s office in Anbar province capital Ramadi from an attack by the Islamic State jihadist group, officers said. Kurdish peshmerga forces also engaged in hours of heavy fighting in Kirkuk province in ...

Nov 25, 2014

Islamic State group raked in up to $45 million in ransom cash

The Islamic State group, which controls a large swath of Syria and Iraq, has received between $35 million and $45 million in ransom payments in the past year, a U.N. expert monitoring sanctions against al-Qaida said Monday. Yotsna Lalji told a meeting of the ...