There is tense quiet hanging over Eastern Ukraine. Shelling is continuing, however at a reduced rate since the rout of Ukrainian troops at Debaltseve. The firing hasn’t ceased, but it has definitely been ‘quieter’ in recent days in Ukraine. But is this simply the calm before the storm? Indeed there is one place which could shatter this almost-ceasefire: Mariupol.
This city, which lies on the Azov Sea is the largest urban area between Russian-backed separatist territory and the Russian-annexed region of Crimea. Many have speculated that the Russian Army is planning to capture this city as part of an attempt to form a so-called ‘land bridge’ to the economically isolated Crimean Peninsula. Unfortunately, in recent days these predictions have begun to carry more and more weight. While the separatist troops of the DNR and LNR have reportedly begun withdrawing their artillery and heavy weapons from the frontline, many reports have emerged that they are merely relocating them further south, and regrouping to prepare an attack against Mariupol. Tellingly, the heaviest ongoing battle has been taking place just to the east of Mariupol, in the small (and now mostly destroyed) town of Shyrokyne.
An ISIS-linked Islamist group has reportedly overrun significant sections of the city of Marawi, located on the southern island of Mindanao in The Philippines.
The Raqqa operation, named Wrath of Euphrates, is entering its final stages as Syrian Democratic Forces are clearing areas north and east of the city of Raqqa from Islamic State presence.
Jenan Moussa, a journalist with UAE based al-Aan TV, released a video on her Twitter claiming to have sent three people undercover into Idlib province, where they filmed daily life with their cellphones.
The official account for the International Coalition for Operation Inherent Resolve has confirmed that coalition warplanes struck pro-government forces near al-Tanf area near the Syria-Iraq border "posing a threat to US partner forces".
Overnight the US Navy launched a Tomahawk cruise missile attack on a Syrian Air Force base in response to the chemical attack in Khan Shaykhun earlier this week.
Recent provocations by Russia and its militant proxies in Avdiivka's Industrial Zone fit with a continuing pattern of violence in SE Ukraine.
Islamic State is busy setting up a new affiliate in the Philippines, and government policies are allowing the threat they pose to worsen.
The battle for the Syrian city of Aleppo is in its final stages as government troops and allied militias dislodge the rebels from the final neighbourhoods
Islamic State (ISIS) fighters have this evening recaptured the city of Palmyra in central Syria.
While AMISOM is assisting in the fight against Al-Shabaab, their lack of success has caused local Somalis to question their motives.