How Islamist militant groups are gaining strength in Africa
Profile: Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL)
The Spread of the Caliphate: The Islamic State (Part 1)
Bulldozing the Border Between Iraq and Syria: The Islamic State
The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, officially 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. ISIL gained global prominence in early 2014 when it drove Iraqi government forces out of key cities in its Western Iraq offensive, followed by its capture of Mosul and the Sinjar massacre.