More than 100 Islamic prayer-leaders from various denominations of Sunni and Shiite Muslims have signed a letter calling on British Muslims not to travel to Iraq or Syria to fight.  Security services say the influx of Western Muslims to Syria creates a threat to the West, when radicalized fighters return home from fighting in the region.

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday welcomed the Saudi king's decision to donate $500 million to Iraqis affected by the recent turmoil. Ban expressed gratitude to Saudi Arabia the aid package that will be distributed through U.N. organizations for life-saving humanitarian assistance to people in Iraq.

In the wired age, "Twitter bombs" that spam feeds with militant propaganda are as much a part of the modern jihadi’s arsenal as bullets. But with every burst of online messaging from extremists comes potential blowback.

A video on YouTube showing a young man preaching out to his “brothers and sisters” in Britain to unleash their jihad upon the United Kingdom has been reported on by The Sunday Times.  The video is just the latest in many more showing young Britons drawing on their western roots and Islamist inspiration to instigate, what might be termed, a YouTube jihad, according to the newspaper.

A senior Iraqi official pointed out that the latest support from Moscow demonstrated America's diminished role in the conflict. "The American influence is getting sidelined ... due to the lack of security and military support to the Iraqi government and people in its war of survival," the official told Foreign Policy.

The announcement of a formal Islamic state by insurgents in Syria and Iraq is a "declaration of war against the West and al Qaida", an expert has warned. The Islamic State in Iraq and Greater Syria (Isis) group has sought to solidify its leadership of worldwide jihad today by declaring that its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, is the new caliph, or head of state.

Iran is ready to help Iraq fight an armed revolt using the same methods it deployed against opposition forces in Syria, an Iranian general said, suggesting Tehran is offering to take a larger role in battling Sunni militias threatening Baghdad.

The extremist jihadist group leading the insurgency against the Iraqi government is using apps, social media and even a feature-length movie to intimidate enemies, recruit new followers and spread its message. And its rivals – including foreign governments – are struggling to keep up.