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What is the impact of ISIS on global politics?How Islamic State's impact has gone globalTwo years ago, few people had heard of the Islamic State terrorist group. Today, its impact is felt around the world.IS was little known before it seized Iraq's second largest city, Mosul, in June 2014 and declared an Islamic 'caliphate' (or state) covering large swathes of Iraq and Syria.But the extreme Islamist group had been building its presence in both countries for years, and its impact has since spread across much of the world.Lowy Institute research associate David Wells says Islamic State's message has resonated with a narrow but global audience."As a result, IS has recruited more individuals from a wider range of nationalities than any previous terrorist group," he says."These fighters — and the pre-existing terrorist networks now affiliated with IS — leave few countries or nationalities immune from the IS threat."But despite their international ambitions and apparent breadth, IS are failing in their core task of creating a viable caliphate. IS-controlled areas in Iraq and Syria are shrinking."As this pressure grows, we can expect IS to attempt further attacks outside the region, promoting their global signNow and shifting media focus from their increasing vulnerability."IraqFighters of the Islamic State stand guard at a checkpoint in the northern Iraq city of Mosul.(Reuters)IS first emerged as a militant force after the US invasion of Iraq in 2003. Al Qaeda in Iraq — an offshoot of Al Qaeda set up by Jordanian militant Abu Musab al-Zarqawi — led the Sunni insurgency against US-led forces.In 2006 after al-Zarqawi's death in a US bombing strike, Al Qaeda in Iraq changed its name to Islamic State in Iraq (ISI).Iraqi militant Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, after years in US detention in Iraq, became leader of ISI in 2010.The outbreak of civil war in Syria presented an opportunity to expand the group's presence. In 2013 al-Baghdadi changed the group's name to Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and declared himself the caliph, or ruler.Since then IS has captured key cities in Iraq — killing tens of thousands of people — and it still controls large areas of the country, including the cities of Mosul and Fallujah.However, since January 2015 it has lost control of Tikrit, Sinjar and Ramadi.SyriaIn March 2013, IS captured the northern Syrian city of Raqqa, which became the de facto capital of its self-declared caliphate. Since then IS has increased its control across Syria as well as Iraq, capturing key oilfields in July 2014, the ancient site of Palmyra in June 2015 and Maheen in Homs province in November 2015.IS still controls large swathes of the country but has lost control of Hassaka and much of Kobane.TurkeyMessages are left in front of the Obelisk of Theodosius where a suicide bomb attack took place at in Istanbul, Turkey(Reuters: Osman Orsal)Turkey has been hit by a spate of bombings and other attacks in recent months, claimed by Islamic State.Most recently, in March 2016, a Turkish member of ISIS was held responsible for a suicide bombing in central Istanbul which killed four people including three Israelis.In January 2016 ISIS claimed responsibility for a bomb attack in Istanbul that killed 10 people, mostly German tourists. And in October 2015 twin bombings killed nearly 100 people in Ankara.Turkey is particularly vulnerable to the ISIS threat, with a border more than 1,000 km long with Syria and Iraq. Estimates suggest at least 2000 ISIS fighters in Syria and Iraq have come from Turkey, and the border has become a thoroughfare for thousands of Islamist recruits from all over the world travelling to join the ISIS cause.Turkey also hosts hundreds of thousands of refugees who have fled Syria, among them some IS sympathisers, recruiters or terrorists.In recent months Turkey claims to have killed around 200 ISIS militants in the wake of the Istanbul attack, and has detained more than 500 suspects.BosniaIn July 2015, European media reported that IS had secretly bought land in an isolated Bosnian village surrounded by forest, which could be used for jihadist training camps or a base to launch terror attacks in Europe.The UK Mirror reported that at least 12 IS fighters from the village of Osve had left for Syria in recent months.IS had also produced a recruitment video targeting young Muslims in Bosnia, Albania or other Balkan nations.AustriaAn Austrian teenager who left her family in Vienna to join the IS cause in Syria is believed to have been killed; 17-year-old Samra Kesinovic fled with a friend, 16-year-old Sabina Selimovic, for life under IS.But recent reports suggest Kesinovic was beaten to death for trying to escape. Selimovic's fate is unknown.In December 2015 Austrian police arrested two French citizens posing as refugees, with suspected links to the November Paris attacks.The International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence estimates between 100 and 150 Austrian citizens have travelled to the Middle East to join militant Islamist groups including IS.ItalyTwo days after the Paris attacks in November 2015, IS posted a video online threatening similar attacks in other world cities including Rome."Allah permitting ... we will invade Rome," a man says in the video.According to Islamic teaching, the conquest of Rome is in keeping with three prophecies made by the Prophet Mohammed to bring about Armageddon — the final struggle between Muslims and non-Muslims — which Islamic jihadists believe will happen at Dabiq in Syria.SpainIn February 2016, Spain arrested seven people suspected of smuggling weapons and funds to IS and other jihadist groups in Syria and Iraq. They included five Spanish nationals of Syrian, Jordanian and Moroccan origin, a Syrian national and a Moroccan.More than 100 Spanish nationals are believed to have travelled to Syria or Iraq as foreign fighters for groups including IS.Since early 2015 more than 80 people have been arrested in Spain suspected of links to terrorist organisations.In 2014, IS released a map outlining its longer-term plan to take over areas of Europe, Africa and the Middle East — which included Spain and Portugal.PortugalPortuguese counter-terrorism authorities believe about a dozen Portuguese citizens have joined jihadist groups in Syria including IS.They include five former footballers who moved to London and converted to Islam. Portuguese media claimed the men played a key role in helping to disseminate videos showing British militant 'Jihadi John' with several hostages who were later beheaded.In August 2015 IS released a map that purported to show the areas of Europe and north Africa it plans to take over by 2020, including Portugal. The map includes a land called 'Andalus' which takes in areas of Portugal, Spain and France that were once occupied by the Moors — Muslim inhabitants of northern Africa — between the 8th and 15th centuries.FranceRescue service personnel work near covered bodies outside a restaurant following the Paris terrorist attacks.(Reuters: Philippe Wojazer)France has suffered the worst atrocities by IS outside the Middle East, with 130 people killed in coordinated shootings in Paris in November 2015.Witnesses reported one of the attackers at the Bataclan theatre told the crowd the attacks were revenge for France's treatment of Muslims all over the world.Only two months before, France had launched its first airstrikes against IS targets in Syria. Days after the shootings France stepped up those airstrikes and sent a warship to the Middle East.In fact, France has been a victim of Islamic jihadism over several years. The attacks on the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in January 2015 were carried out by Al Qaeda sympathisers.There has long been speculation that Muslim communities in France have become an incubator for Islamist extremism. France has been home for decades to waves of Arab immigrants from northern Africa, especially Morocco and Algeria.Several of the attackers identified in the Paris attacks were Moroccan-born or of Moroccan heritage. In 2014 several French journalists were taken hostage by IS militants in Syria. They were released in April 2015.IrelandAbout 40 Irish nationals are believed to have travelled to the Middle East to join Islamic State.A former IS operative told Irish radio in 2015 that Irish fighters made "perfect snipers [and] every place they need snipers they move the Irish there".An IS video released in late 2015 threatened an attack in Ireland, which it said was part of a "coalition of devils".An Irish court recently ordered the deportation of a man believed to be recruiting for Islamic State. The case has gone to an appeals court.United KingdomNearly 1,500 British citizens have tried to travel to Syria to fight with IS or other extremist groups.UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond says more than half — about 800 jihadists and their families — have succeeded in entering Syria in the past four years, and about half of those are still there. The rest were stopped by British authorities from leaving the UK, or in Turkey.Britons have played a prominent role in the IS cause and at least 50 Britons have been killed fighting in Syria.Mohammed Emwazi — better known as 'Jihadi John' — became a poster boy for foreign jihadists wanting to fight with IS, appearing in several videos of Western hostages who were beheaded. He was killed in a drone strike in November 2015.Junaid Hussain — a British hacker and online recruiter — was actively involved in recruiting for IS and plotting terrorist attacks in the UK. He too was killed in a drone strike.In December 2015 British media reported that Islamic State had singled out the UK as its next target, in revenge for the UK Parliament's vote to launch air strikes against IS targets in Syria.BelgiumOn March 22 the Belgian capital of Brussels was rocked by a string of deadly attacks thought to be linked to Islamic extremism.Two bombs tore through the departure lounge of the Brussels airport, killing 14 people and injuring dozens more, while another, detonated at a metro station during the peak hour rush, left 20 dead.While authorities are yet to formally blame IS for the attack, the terrorist organisation has released a statement claiming responsibility.The attack came four days after Belgian police captured the last surviving suspect involved in the Paris November attacks which killed 130 people, and were claimed by Islamic State.Salah Abdeslam – who lived in the Brussels suburb of Molenbeek – has reportedly confessed to Belgian police that he had originally intended to detonate a suicide vest near the Stade de France on November 13, but changed his mind at the last minute.He also admitted there were plans to carry out a second attack in Belgium, and prosecutors allege he played a central role in the Paris attacks.Several of the attackers and planners behind the Paris attacks were residents of Belgium, including Abdeslam's brother Brahim who blew himself up outside a Paris restaurant. In the days immediately after the attacks Belgian police launched a series of raids on suburbs in Brussels including Molenbeek – said to be a hotbed of Islamist terrorism.The Belgian capital was locked down for several days amid fears of an imminent attack on a similar scale to that in Paris. New Year's Eve festivities were also cancelled.A recent UN report suggests Belgium has provided more foreign fighters to the jihadist cause in Syria and Iraq than any other country in Europe.NetherlandsA report in January 2016 by the Dutch intelligence services, the AIVD, suggests at least 200 Dutch nationals — including around 50 women — have joined IS ranks in Syria or Iraq in the past two years.It is estimated there are about 70 children with at least one Dutch parent in IS-controlled areas — a third of whom were born in Syria or Iraq and others brought there by one or both parents.The Dutch Government has announced it will take part in US-led air strikes against IS in Syria, extending its current air support mission over Iraq. The announcement overturns a previous decision that the Netherlands would not extend air strikes over Syria without a UN mandate.GermanyThe attacks on Paris in November 2015 highlighted the threat IS poses to neighbouring countries including Germany. Media reports in the weeks after the Paris shootings said IS was looking for volunteers to carry out attacks in Germany.Several Germans were among the 10 people killed in a January 2016 bombing in Istanbul, for which IS claimed responsibility – the worst attack against Germans in more than a decade.In December 2015 Germany's cabinet approved plans to send 1,200 troops to the Middle East to support the coalition fight against IS. But Germany will not take part in air strikes.DenmarkBullet holes in a Copenhagen cafe, where police killed a man behind deadly attacks on a synagogue and a protest.(Reuters: Hannibal Hanschke)In February 2015 two people were shot dead in separate attacks in Copenhagen by a gunman who had allegedly sworn allegiance to IS on his Facebook page.He opened fire first at a forum on free speech and then outside a synagogue. He was later shot dead by police.Denmark was a member of the US-led Coalition in Iraq and Syria but pulled its fighter jets out in September for maintenance reasons. After the Paris attacks in November the Danish Foreign Minister expressed a wish to rejoin the Coalition air strikes in 2016.NorwayIn January 2016, a Norwegian court jailed three men for supporting or fighting with IS in Syria.The Norwegian Government is to tighten legislation to impose harsher penalties against citizens suspected of participating in the Syrian conflict.About 70 Norwegians are believed to have travelled to Syria to fight alongside IS, 20 of whom have returned. One former fighter, killed in 2014, predicted that IS would send an army to conquer Norway and establish Sharia law.SwedenPolice in Sweden are investigating a series of letters 'signed by IS' and posted across the country that threaten to behead 'non-believers' if they refuse to convert to Islam or pay a religious tax.The worst threats appear to have been made in Gothenburg, which local media say is the European city from which the most people, per capita, have joined Islamic extremist groups.The Swedish security service Säpo suggests more than 300 Swedish nationals have left the country to fight with extremist groups in Syria or Iraq.FinlandIn January 2016 Finnish authorities detained Iraqi twin brothers suspected of taking part in one of IS's worst massacres in Iraq.European media said the pair pleaded not guilty to shooting and killing 11 unarmed captives during a massacre in the Iraqi city of Tikrit in June 2014. They were found in a Finnish refugee centre.About 60 Finnish passport holders are believed to have left Finland to fight with IS in Syria.RussiaA militant jihadist group Caucasus Emirate is active in the country's south-west and has declared its allegiance to IS. It has declared its intention to establish an Islamic state over areas including Chechnya and Ingushetia.AfghanistanA schoolgirl falls as she and others run after a blast near the Pakistani consulate in Jalalabad, Afghanistan.(Reuters: Parwiz)Islamic State is a relatively new force in Afghanistan but has already established a small stronghold in the eastern Nangarhar province. In December 2015 the Times reported that about 1,600 IS fighters had captured four districts in the province south of Jalalabad.In January 2016 Islamic State claimed responsibility for an attack on the Pakistani consulate in the province and IS militants recently launched their own radio station in Nangarhar to boost recruitment as they try to compete with the Taliban as the leading Islamist force in Afghanistan.PakistanIslamic State is trying to strengthen its presence in several provinces in Pakistan by launching attacks.In January 2016 it claimed responsibility for an attack on a Pakistani TV station in Islamabad that wounded one person.In May 2015 IS militants also claimed responsibility for an attack in the southern port city of Karachi that killed at least 43 Shiite Muslims.IndiaIn a new manifesto posted online in December 2015 IS vowed to expand its fight to India, a country it said was preparing for a future war against Muslims.The manifesto claimed India was part of IS's Islamic caliphate and said a resurgence of Hinduism meant there was a growing number of Hindus "who kill Muslims who eat beef".BangladeshIn February 2016 Islamic State claimed responsibility for the death of a Hindu priest who was reportedly hacked to death at Panchagar in northern Bangladesh. Several attackers reportedly cut the man's throat as he was organising prayers. A man who went to his aid was wounded.The Bangladeshi government has maintained IS has no presence in the country, despite the jihadist group claiming it carried out several previous attacks.In December 2015 IS claimed responsibility for a suicide bomb attack on a mosque of minority Ahmadi Muslims, which killed three people. Last year IS also claimed responsibility for several attacks which killed three foreigners — including a Japanese citizen and an Italian aid worker.In the days after the Paris attacks IS singled out Bangladesh as one country where its 'soldiers' were planning further attacks.ChinaA Uighur man looks on as a truck carrying paramilitary policemen travel along a street during an anti-terrorism rally in China.(Reuters)In July 2014, in a speech announcing an Islamic caliphate in Syria and Iraq, IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared war on several nations accused of violating Muslim rights. Top of the list was China, which has cracked down on Uighur Muslims in the remote western Xinjiang province.Uighur extremists have launched a spate of attacks against non-Muslim targets, including an attack in 2014 at China's Kunming railway station that killed about 30 people. There is no evidence IS was behind the attack.But the government in Beijing claims hundreds of Uighurs may have left China to join the fight alongside IS in Syria and Iraq.In December 2015 IS released a song in Mandarin to recruit Chinese Muslims to its cause.JapanIn early 2015 IS militants beheaded two Japanese citizens captured in Syria, one a military contractor and the other a journalist. Japan — with its policy of complete pacifism — refused demands to pay a ransom for either man.Since then Japan has passed legislation allowing its military to engage in overseas combat to defend allies, although the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has declared Japan will not join any military action against IS.ThailandIn December 2015 Thai authorities claimed Islamic jihadists were planning a major terrorist attack in Thailand against Westerners, with tourist resorts and foreign embassies among the most likely targets.Evidence suggested 10 Syrians linked to IS had entered Thailand with plans to attack foreigners.The attacks in Jakarta on January 14 have raised fears that Islamic State is spreading its presence throughout South-East Asia, and intelligence agencies believe Thailand could well be on the terror group's list of targets.MalaysiaMalaysian authorities estimate several hundred Muslims have left the country to join the terrorist group in the Middle East.Experts say in fact there is an entire military unit in the Middle East of terrorists recruited from Malaysia and Indonesia, known as the Malay Archipelago Combat Unit.In recent years Malaysian authorities have arrested scores of individuals suspected of supporting IS or who have returned from fighting in Syria and Iraq.Counter-terrorism authorities say an attack in Malaysia is a matter of when, not if, and that local IS members have threatened to bomb key targets in the country, including entertainment venues.Soon after the Jakarta attacks Malaysian authorities arrested four suspected IS militants, one of whom was planning a suicide attack in the country.PhilippinesIn December 2015 IS released a propaganda video purportedly showing a terrorist training camp its militants have set up in the country's south. The video urges Muslims in the Philippines to join the jihadist cause and refers to "soldiers of the caliphate in the Philippines".The Philippines denies the terror camp exists but has long fought Islamic extremism on the island of Mindanao.In 2014 the so-called 'Black Flag' group, previously aligned to Al Qaeda, declared its allegiance with IS. The group has been involved in clashes with government forces.IndonesiaPolice officers react near the site of a blast in Jakarta, Indonesia.(Reuters: Darren Whiteside)In January 2016 IS claimed responsibility for a series of hand grenade and shooting attacks in central Jakarta, which killed at least seven people including foreigners.As shocking as the attacks were on one level, they were not a complete surprise to counter-terrorism experts, who long feared such an attack.Indonesian police later claimed the attacks were ordered and funded by IS and believe a key organiser, Indonesian jihadist Bahrun Naim, is currently living in Islamic State's de-facto capital Raqqa in Syria.As the world's biggest Muslim nation Indonesia is particularly vulnerable to radical Islamist terrorism.In February 2016 the ABC revealed IS was actively psignNowing at mosques in Jakarta and recruiting supporters to travel to Syria to join the jihadist cause.Counter-terrorism authorities believe as many as 500 Indonesians have left to fight with IS in Syria and Iraq. Many have since returned.They say many IS members in Indonesia were once members of Jemaah Islamiyah, the now-defunct jihadist group responsible for the Bali bombings and other attacks.IS has also been blamed for earlier bomb threats in Jakarta, including a thwarted chlorine bomb attack in February 2015.AustraliaFloral tributes for victims of the Lindt Chocolate Cafe siege fill Martin Place in Sydney, close to where the siege took place.(ABC: John Donegan)Australia has seen two attacks by Islamic State sympathisers.In December 2014 a lone gunman — Iranian born Man Haron Monis — took 18 hostages at the Lindt Cafe in Martin Place, Sydney. During the siege Monis demanded an IS flag be brought to him and hostages were seen holding a black Islamic flag in the cafe window. Two hostages and the gunman were killed.In October 2015, 15-year-old Iranian born boy Farhad Khalil Mohammad Jabar shot and killed a NSW police force civilian employee outside the Paramatta police station.Subsequent investigations have shown Jabar was influenced by a group of Islamist extremists in western Sydney.Australia has so far avoided an attack on the scale of those in Paris or Turkey, or directed from IS leaders in the Middle East. But IS propaganda released in the days after the Paris shootings threatened revenge attacks against all nations included in the US-led coalition in Syria and Iraq.New ZealandEven New Zealand faces a potential threat from IS, with at least 30 suspected sympathisers on a government watch list.NZ has deployed about 140 troops in the US-led coalition in Iraq — in a non-combat role. The NZ Cabinet is now reviewing this role.United StatesIS supporters or recruits have been blamed for a series of attacks and plots, including December's shootings at San Bernadino in California, in which a married couple killed 14 people and wounded 17.US media reports say at least 150 Americans have travelled to Syria to fight with IS. More than 50 have been charged with assisting the militant group.CanadaIn October 2014 a lone attacker deliberately rammed a car into two Canadian soldiers, one of whom died the next day. The attacker was identified as a Muslim convert who had become a supporter of IS and previously expressed a wish to fight with the group in the Middle East.Two days later another Muslim convert shot and killed a Canadian soldier at the Canadian National War Memorial in Ottawa, before entering the national parliament where he began shooting at security guards. He was shot dead in the gunfight.In the days after the November 2015 Paris shootings, IS called for similar attacks against Western countries, including Canada.In October 2015 Canada's new liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Canada would withdraw from the US-led combat mission against IS targets in Syria and Iraq.South AfricaAt least 50 South Africans are believed to have joined IS in Syria according to local analysts and Iraq's ambassador to South Africa, Hashim al-Alawi. Some have since returned.UgandaTwo Ugandan brothers were arrested in Kenya last July, accused of recruiting for IS in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania.KenyaKenyan authorities have blamed a failed bus attack in December 2015 on IS-linked militants.IS launched a recruitment campaign in 2015 to encourage members of Al Shabaab — the militant group operating in Somalia and across the border with Kenya — to leave al Shabaab and join IS.Kenyan police say about 200 al Shabaab fighters have done so and are now operating in the border region.Unconfirmed reports also say the al Shabaab operative who helped orchestrate an attack on Kenya's Garissa University College in April 2015 — which killed 148 people — has since switched to IS.SomaliaIn 2015 Islamic State launched a recruitment campaign in Somalia to encourage members of Al Shabaab — the militant group aligned with Al Qaeda — to defect and join IS. In October a senior Al Shabaab commander and about 20 of his followers pledged allegiance to IS.Recently two other Al Shabaab members — a US citizen and a permanent US resident — were apprehended as they tried to leave Somalia, apparently to join IS.Al Shabaab leaders have threatened death to anyone leaving the group.EthiopiaIn April 2015 IS released a video showing the execution of 28 Ethiopian Christians in Libya. The Ethiopians had been on their way to the coast in the hope of travelling by boat to Europe.In October of the same year, Ethiopian authorities arrested about 20 IS members suspected of planning terrorist attacks as part of a plan to declare an IS-linked state in Ethiopia.They say IS sleeper cells are active in southern Ethopia and have a base in the capital Addis Ababa.South SudanIn October 2015 IS militants beheaded a South Sudanese Christian man in Libya. IS justified the killing as retaliation for the alleged persecution of Muslims by South Sudan's majority Christian population.EritreaIn August 2015 IS militants in Libya executed nearly 40 Eritrean Christians after they refused to convert to Islam.The group was among about 80 Eritrean asylum seekers kidnapped in June after they fled their dictatorial homeland and tried to signNow the coast to board a boat to Europe.The executions and kidnapping came a few months after IS executed 28 Ethiopian Christians in Libya.One Eritrean journalist now living in Sweden estimates around 500 Eritreans have probably been captured by IS as they try to signNow Mediterranean Europe.SudanThe Sudanese Government says about 70 young men and women have travelled to Syria or Libya to join IS. They included a group of at least 16 British-born doctors studying at the University of Medical Services and Technology in Khartoum.The UK Government sent a delegation to Sudan in January 2016 to try to discourage more British-born doctors from joining IS.Sudan has tightened regulations to make it harder for people to get visas to travel to countries where IS is a major threat. Security and education authorities have run awareness campaigns to prevent young Sudanese joining the militant group.Sudan's national intelligence agency also claims it has busted two recruiting cells for IS, and released three IS sympathisers last month.Radical Islamist groups have been a threat in Sudan for several years but more recently IS appears to be actively recruiting in Sudan.Chad, Niger, Cameroon, Nigeria and BeninIn early 2015 five African nations — Chad, Niger, Cameroon, Nigeria and Benin — formed a multinational taskforce against Boko Haram, the radical Islamist group that pledged allegiance to IS in March 2015.Boko Haram has launched a series of bombings and terror attacks in Chad, Niger and Cameroon.NigeriaThe terrorist group Boko Haram declared allegiance to IS in March 2015. The group formally changed its name to Islamic State's West African Province in April 2015.The Global Terrorism Index recently named Boko Haram as the world's deadliest terrorist organisation. It controls areas of Nigeria's north-east and has launched suicide bombings and terrorist attacks not only in Nigeria but also in Cameroon, Niger and Chad.MauritaniaIn June 2015 a court in Mauritania sentenced three men to between five years and 10 years jail for alleged links to Islamic State. They were accused of plotting terror attacks and possession terrorist propaganda.MoroccoMoroccan media reports say 1,500 Moroccans have joined IS since 2011 to fight in Syria and Iraq. In August 2015 Moroccan authorities arrested several suspected IS recruiters, and IS reportedly has a number of active cells in the country. Morocco is increasingly on the radar of counter-terrorism officials, since it was revealed some of the Paris attackers were of Moroccan heritage.AlgeriaAn IS-affiliated group Jund al Khilafa (Soldiers of the caliphate) beheaded French journalist Herve Gourdel in Algeria in September 2014.IS has a small but growing presence in the country; Algerian forces have so far thwarted other attacks.The Algerian Government has mobilised thousands of troops along the border with Libya in part to prevent the spread of IS militants into the country.TunisiaTunisia is widely seen as the biggest single source of foreign fighters joining ISIS in Syria or Iraq, with estimates up to 7,000 citizens have joined the jihadist group in the past couple of years. More than a third have come from just three areas – the capital Tunis, Bizerte in the north and Ben Gardane in the south, these latter two towns with a history of defying government authority. Many Tunisians have also joined ISIS' growing presence in neighbouring Libya where the Islamist group has seized control of several towns and an airbase. In March 2016 suspected ISIS fighters launched a cross border attack on a Tunisian army and police bases. But Tunisian soldiers fought back, killing more than 30 militants. Altogether around 50 people were killed. Tunisia's President Beji Caid Essebsi condemned the attack as an unprecedent attempt by jihadists to establish a new Islamic State emirate. A year earlier two ISIS gunmen killed 23 people at the Bardo museum in Tunis. In June 2015 ISIS claimed responsibility when an armed attacker shot and killed 38 people on a beach at Sousse.At least one militant group in Tunisia – Ansar al Sharia – has declared its support for ISIS.LibyaAn armed motorcade of the Libyan city of Derna's Islamic Youth Council, who have pledged allegiance to IS, fly black flags.(Reuters)Estimates suggest IS has about 5,000 recruits in Libya, who have exploited ongoing instability in the country since the fall and death of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.IS now controls Gaddafi's home town Sirte, the town of Harawa and the Al Qardabiya airbase. It has tried to take control of Misrata and Derna.In December 2015, IS fighters seized control of Sabratha — site of a World Heritage-listed Roman theatre.Reports say Libya is an important training ground for IS recruits from across the region.EgyptIS has a strong presence on the Sinai Peninsula, where it has carried out numerous bombings, shootings, assassinations and other attacks targeting Egyptian soldiers, police, judges and civilians.In October 2015 IS claimed responsibility for bombing a Russian passenger plane soon after take-off from Sharm el-Sheikh, a tourist area in the south of the peninsula.IS has reportedly also spread to other parts of Egypt where disaffection with the military government and a death sentence against former Islamist president Mohammed al Morsi have fuelled a growing number of IS recruits.GazaA local Palestinian jihadist organisation — the Sheikh Omar Hadid Brigade — recently declared its allegiance to Islamic State and claimed responsibility for rocket attacks into southern Israel.LebanonIS claimed responsibility for a double suicide bombing in November 2015 in a southern Shiite suburb of Beirut, which killed more than 40 people.The Shiite armed militia Hezbollah has managed to thwart several attacks along the Lebanon-Syria border.IS — or IS-affiliated groups — have targeted the Shiite minority in an attempt to incite a sectarian war and draw in more Sunni recruits.JordanIslamic State had its origins in Al Qaeda in Iraq – an offshoot of Al Qaeda – set up by a Jordanian militant Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who was first radicalised during years spent in a Jordanian prison.It was Zarqawi who masterminded Jordan's worst terror attacks in 2005, when 60 people were killed when three upmarket hotels were bombed simultaneously.Today Jordanians – along with Tunisians and Saudis – make up the biggest source of jihadist fighters to the ISIS cause in neighbouring Syria and Iraq. An estimated 2500 fighters have come from Jordan in the past two years.Jordan also houses hundreds of thousands of refugees from the Syrian conflict, among them possible ISIS sympathisers.The Jordanian government has struggled to contain the ISIS threat, most deeply felt after the brutal murder of a Jordanian pilot during a raid on jihadist targets in Syria in January 2015.The pilot, Muadh al-Kasasbeh – was burned alive while kept captive in a cage. In retaliation Jordan's King Abdullah vowed to wage a 'relentless war' on Islamic State after the murder. Jordan also increased its involvement in the US-led Coalition against SIS in Syria and Iraq.KuwaitIn June 2015 IS claimed responsibility for bombing a Shiite mosque in Kuwait City, an attack that killed nearly 30 people and wounded more than 200.Saudi ArabiaSaudi government forces have arrested hundreds of IS supporters in recent months. IS has reportedly claimed it has sleeper cells in Saudi Arabia, and has carried out several bombings against the minority Shiite population, including attacks on two Shiite mosques.However, it is unclear how many groups or individuals support IS in Saudi Arabia.YemenIslamic State has been blamed for a series of attacks on Shiite and Houthi communities and mosques in recent months, killing more than 140 people.IS declared a caliphate in Yemen in April 2015, raising its black flag in the capital Sanaa. It also has a presence in several provinces including Hadramawt.Traditionally, Al Qaeda has dominated the Islamist presence in Yemen, and still controls a sizeable area of the country.