Spotlight on Global Jihad (April 18-25, 2018)

The main event of the week was the expansion of the Syrian regime’s control over the Damascus region. On April 19, 2018, the Syrian army and the forces supporting it launched a campaign to take over the southern neighborhoods of Damascus, which are under ISIS’s control. The main event in ISIS’s provinces abroad this week was a multi-casualty suicide bombing attack in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan.
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Spotlight on Iran (March 29 – April 15, 2018)

Seven Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) cadres, including a senior commander with the rank of colonel in the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) operation of the IRGC, were killed last week in an airstrike on the Syrian Air Force Base T-4. Bolstering of the Iran-Russia axis: Iran and Russia held discussions on the escalation in Syria. Iran stood by Syria following the chemical weapons attack on Douma by the Assad regime, and the United States’ threat to respond militarily to this attack. in a meeting with representatives of the electoral bloc formed by leaders of some of the Shi’ite pro-Iranian militias ahead of the elections. The Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mohammed Javad Zarif, held a phone call with the Head of Hamas’ Political Bureau, Ismail Haniyeh, against the backdrop of the “Marches of Return” in Gaza. Zarif emphasized to Haniyeh Iran’s support for the Palestinians
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Spotlight on Iran (March 18 – March 28, 2018)

The Supreme Leader of Iran, Ali Khamenei, used his annual speech on the occasion of the Iranian New Year (Nowruz) to justify, once again, Iran’s regional involvement. The growing dissatisfaction in Iran due to the obstacles placed by Baghdad and Damascus, which are frustrating Tehran’s efforts to cement its economic influence in those countries, has now manifested in Friday sermons as well. Tehran continues to apprehensively monitor the improvement in relations between Iraq and Saudi Arabia against the backdrop of the looming visit of the Saudi crown prince to Baghdad.
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The Yarmouk refugee camp: Overview on the eve of the Syrian army attack on the southern neighborhoods of Damascus controlled by ISIS, according to satellite images

On April 19, 2018, the Syrian army launched an attack to take over the south Damascus neighborhoods controlled by ISIS. ISIS’s two important strongholds are the Yarmouk refugee camp, taken over by ISIS about two years ago, and the Al-Hajar Al-Aswad neighborhood, south of the camp. The Yarmouk refugee camp is the largest Palestinian refugee camp in Syria.
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After taking control of eastern Al-Ghouta, the Syrian army launched a campaign to take over the southern suburbs of Damascus from ISIS. The takeover of these suburbs will continue to consolidate the Assad regime’s control of the Damascus region

On April 19, 2018, the information unit of the Syrian army announced the launching of the campaign to liberate the areas controlled by ISIS in southern Damascus. After around two weeks of preparations, the operation began with artillery fire and airstrikes against ISIS’s headquarters, outposts, weapons and supply routes in the Yarmouk refugee camp and in Al-Hajar al-Aswad neighborhood west of the camp.
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Iranian Website Published a Speech Delivered by Hezbollah Secretary General at a Closed Forum Expressing Total Devotion to Iran’s Supreme Leader. Similar Statements were Issued Previously by Hezbollah Officials

On March 12, the conservative Iranian website Farda News published a full transcript of a speech delivered by Hezbollah Secretary General, Hassan Nasrallah, at a conference of Iranian nationals residing in Lebanon. In the speech, Nasrallah declared that his organization is wholly committed to the Iranian Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, and that the commitment to Khamenei trumps the organization’s commitment to the Lebanese constitution.
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News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (February 21 – 27, 2018)

In Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip demonstrations and riots continue, although small in scope. The most serious event was in Jericho, where a Palestinian was killed during an Israeli security force activity. During January and February 2018 the Israeli security forces detained three Arab Israelis from Umm al-Fahm. The three had planned to carry out a terrorist attack on the Temple Mount similar to the one carried out in July 2017 which killed two Israeli policemen. The humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip continues to be serious.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (April 12-17, 2018)

With the takeover of the city of Duma and the evacuation of the last fighters from its territory, the Syrian army effectively completed the takeover of eastern Al-Ghouta. Now the Syrian army and the forces supporting it are shifting the center of operations to the Al-Yarmouk refugee camp in southern Damascus. In Iraq, the security forces continued to operate against a number of areas where pockets of ISIS operatives remained. The Egyptian security forces, which have been working for around two months to eradicate the presence of ISIS in the Sinai Peninsula, suffered losses in an attempt by ISIS operatives to infiltrate one of the army bases in Sinai.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (March 22-28, 2018)

The Syrian forces took control of most of eastern Al-Ghouta and are completing its takeover from the rebel organizations. In the north, the Turkish army and the Syrian forces supporting it are completing the takeover of the Afrin enclave. In addition to the fighting being waged by ISIS in Syria and Iraq, its supporters abroad continue to carry out ISIS-inspired attacks in Western countries, proving that the jihadi ideology and the ISIS brand are still highly attractive.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (March 15-21, 2018)

In eastern Al-Ghouta, the Syrian army continued to attack the three enclaves of the rebel groups, whose territory is shrinking. According to Syrian sources, around 75% of the area of eastern Al-Ghouta has been taken over by the Syrian Army. On March 18, 2018, Turkish President Tayyip Erdoğan announced that the Turkish army and the Syrian forces cooperating with it had completed the takeover of the city of Afrin, in northwestern Syria. Kurdish fighters from the SDF forces have moved from the lower Euphrates Valley to the enclave of Afrin in order to take part in the fighting against the Turkish army.
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The Palestinian Authority in collaboration with Turkey is searching the Ottoman State Archives for documentation regarding Palestinian ownership of lands, including waqf property in Jerusalem, to prevent land from being sold to Israel

For years the Palestinian Authority (PA) has collaborated with Turkey in transferring documents to the Palestinians from the Ottoman State Archives, primarily those dealing with the ownership of real estate.
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News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (April 17 – 24, 2018)

On April 20, 2018, the fourth Friday of the "great return march," about 10,000 Palestinians demonstrated and rioted at five central locations along the Gaza Strip border. Palestinians in Judea and Samaria have avoided exceptional shows of solidarity with the Gaza Strip, even before special events.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (March 29 – April 11, 2018)

The Syrian army continued to attack the rebel organizations in the city of Duma, their last significant stronghold in eastern Al-Ghouta. Meanwhile, the Syrian army is about to complete its takeover of eastern Al-Ghouta. Recently, there have been more and more reports of the US intention to withdraw its troops from Syria
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (19-27 September 2017)

The Islamic State is disintegrating in Syria and Iraq. Its territorial areas of control Iraq are falling to the two anti-ISIS coalition forces one after another, although in some important strongholds ISIS operatives continue stubborn fighting.
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Strong condemnation of Iran for its support of terrorism and calling Hezbollah a terrorist organization at an emergency meeting of the Arab League in Cairo

On November 19, 2017, the Arab League's foreign ministers held an emergency meeting in Cairo at the request of Saudi Arabia. The meeting focused on Iranian intervention in the internal affairs of the Arab states. Saudi Arabia complained of the launching of an Iran-manufactured ballistic missile into Saudi territory by the Iranian-supported Houthis.
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ISIS-inspired Terrorist Attack in the South of France

The attack in the South of France demonstrated that even after the collapse of the Islamic State and the transformation of ISIS into a terrorist and guerrilla organization fighting for its existence in Syria and Iraq, the ISIS brand is still highly attractive, as is its Salafi-jihadi ideology and the vision of the Islamic Caliphate.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (February 15-21, 2018)

In the Euphrates River area north of Albukamal, ISIS operatives continued intensive guerrilla warfare against the SDF forces and the local Syrian forces. ISIS continues to conduct guerrilla warfare against the Iraqi security forces and Shiite militias (the Popular Mobilization) in the various provinces in Iraq. The Egyptian security forces continue their operation (Sinai 2018) against outposts of ISIS’s Sinai Province. The Egyptian operation is focused on northern Sinai.
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