John Davison

In Iraqi holy city, row over female violinist at soccer match shows social rift

08 Aug 2019

KERBALA, Iraq The match should have been cause for young Iraqis to celebrate. Their national team beat Lebanon 1-0 in the first competitive international hosted by Iraq for years in the holy city of Kerbala, complete with an opening ceremony of music and dance. | Video

Iraqi Shi'ite groups deepen control in strategic Sunni areas

13 Jun 2019

MOSUL, Iraq The only sign that Sunni-majority Mosul's newest and busiest marketplace is in Shi'ite Muslim hands is a small plaque in the office of its leaseholder from Baghdad.

Iraq weighs captives' rights against fear of new Islamic State

23 May 2019

AL-HOL CAMP, Syria Iraqi farmer Shaker Salih says he feared Islamic State, but feared its defeat even more. His problem is persuading people to believe that he did not support the jihadists.

U.S. pulls staff from Iraq, says Iran gave 'blessing' for tanker attacks

16 May 2019

BAGHDAD/WASHINGTON Helicopters ferried U.S. staff from the American embassy in Baghdad on Wednesday out of apparent concern about perceived threats from Iran, which U.S. sources believe encouraged Sunday's attacks on four oil tankers in the Gulf. | Video

U.S. pressures Baghdad over Iran-backed militias

15 May 2019

BAGHDAD Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's surprise visit to Baghdad this month came after U.S. intelligence showed Iran-backed Shi'ite militias positioning rockets near bases housing U.S. forces, according to two Iraqi security sources.

Christianity grows in Syrian town once besieged by Islamic State

17 Apr 2019

KOBANI, Syria A community of Syrians who converted to Christianity from Islam is growing in Kobani, a town besieged by Islamic State for months, and where the tide turned against the militants four years ago. | Video

Teenage brides trapped between Islamic State and its victors

13 Apr 2019

AL-HOL CAMP, Syria Rawan Aboud tried to escape Islamic State after the death of her abusive first husband, a militant killed fighting for the group. She was jailed and forced to marry another fighter. When he died, she finally fled. | Video

Snipers, starvation and death: IS 'caliphate' ended in bloodbath

11 Apr 2019

AL-HOL CAMP, Syria Even when U.S. coalition air strikes and artillery paused for people to evacuate during lulls in fighting, the killing did not stop in Islamic State's final enclave.

Islamic State recruit says many foreign fighters jailed or killed

11 Apr 2019

RMEILAN, Syria A Tajik man who joined Islamic State said many foreigners who enlisted in its self-declared caliphate in Iraq and Syria were jailed or killed for trying to leave.

Starved infants, wounded women crowd Syrian hospitals after Islamic State defeat

08 Apr 2019

HASAKA, Syria The paramedics' log at al-Hol camp in eastern Syria lists the injuries and ailments of infants rushed from the battlefield to its crowded, dirty clinic: malnourishment, stunted growth, broken leg. | Video

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