Islamic State have released rare pictures showing women fighters battling on the front line for the terrorist organisation.
The snaps show one female fighter, wearing a burqa and gloves, firing an AK47-style assault rifle from behind an earth rampart alongside a comrade.
Another shot shows several armed women in the back of a white pickup truck with a male fighter at the side of the cab and an ISIS flag in the bed of the vehicle.
Female fighter: A woman dressed head to toe in black, including a burqa covering her face, fires an assault rifle as she fights for ISIS on the frontline
The images are thought to be some of the first showing ISIS women fighting on the front line.
Most of the images previously released by the terror group have shown the feared all-female religious police called the Al-Khansaa Brigade.
The brigade, which may still be in operation, was mainly made up of foreign women Jihadists who toured the streets of captured ISIS territories such as Raqqa.
They would enforce strict Sharia by handing out beatings to women who violated their religious laws, such as not obeying dress codes or venturing outside on their own without a male relative.
Transport: Several armed women sit in the back of a white pickup with a male fighter at the side of the cab
Terrorist: The woman fighter holds up one finger in the air, a handgesture used by ISIS
But these pictures – believed to have been taken in Syria – show that ISIS ranks are now so depleted that women are being called up to fight.
Middle East expert Shiraz Maher – an analyst and lecturer at Kings College in London – commented on the photos on Twitter, saying: ‘A new official release from Islamic State shows women in combat roles.
‘They’ve previously spoken about it, but this is the first time we’ve seen actual evidence it of it.’
Terrorists: Female members of ISIS have previously been photographed bearing arms, but it has mostly been in promotional images of the all-female police force, the al-Khansaa brigade
Despite women having few rights under the rule of Islamic State, warlords do permit them to fight for the caliphate.
The female fighters known as Mojahida mainly came countries in North Africa, especially Tunisia.
But a lot of women from western European nations, such as the UK, Britain and Germany, have also joined ISIS.
Khadijah Dare, who studied media and psychology at a London’s university before fleeing to Syria in 2012, once tweeted: ‘I want to be the first UK woman to kill a UK or US terrorist.’