Spotlight on Global Jihad (August 1-7, 2019)

On August 2, 2019, the Syrian army announced a ceasefire in the Idlib area following the statement that was made by participants of the Astana meeting (August 1, 2019). The Astana statement called for a calm on the ground in the Idlib area based on the implementation of the Sochi Memorandum The ceasefire lasted four days until the Syrian army announced the resumption of military activity. Following the Syrian army’s announcement, exchanges of fire in the Idlib area resumed. In the Iraqi arena, ISIS’s intensive activity in the various provinces continues. On August 3, 2019, ISIS renewed its Raids of Attrition campaign in Syria, Iraq and the various provinces around the globe. Intensive activity in Afghanistan was the major part of ISIS’s attacks around the globe. In addition, “routine” attacks by ISIS operatives continued in the Sinai Peninsula, Nigeria, Niger, Mozambique, Somalia, Pakistan, the Philippines, and Yemen.

Spotlight on Global Jihad (July 25-31, 2019)

The Syrian army managed to record an achievement in the Idlib area after many weeks of being bogged down. At the same time, ISIS’s process of recovery in Syria continued. In the Iraqi arena, ISIS continues its intensive terrorist and guerrilla activity in the various provinces. ISIS’s routine activity in the various overseas provinces and regions continued

Spotlight on Iran (July 14 – July 28, 2019)

The former commander of Iranian forces in Syria revealed for the first time details from the meeting between the Commander of the Qods Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), Qasem Soleimani, and Russian President Putin in the summer of 2015. In mid-July, the Special Adviser on Foreign Affairs to the Chairman of the Majlis, Hossein Amir Abdollahian, paid a visit to Syria and Lebanon and met with senior officials from both countries. On July 22, Iraq’s Prime Minister, Adel Abdul Mahdi, arrived for a visit in Tehran and met with President Rouhani. The spokesman of the Popular Mobilization Units (al-Hashd al-Shaabi), the pro-Iranian Iraqi militias, denied the reports about presence of Iranian forces in the Amerli base in northern Iraq. A senior delegation of Hamas officials, led by the Deputy Head of the Political Bureau of the organization, Saleh al-Arouri, visited Tehran and met high-ranking Iranian officials.

Syria is preparing to open the new, upgraded Albukamal Border Crossing with Iraq, with Iran support. The crossing is expected to serve as an Iranian land bridge through Iraq to Syria and from there to Lebanon.

The Iraqi, Syrian and Lebanese media recently reported that preparations were made to open the Albukamal border crossing between Syria and Iraq. So far no formal statement has been issued regarding the date of its opening. According to a number of reports the crossing is supposed to open within two months. The preparations included security coordination meetings held in Damascus and attended by high-ranking Syrian, Iraqi and Iranian military commanders.

Spotlight on Global Jihad (July 18-24, 2019)

The Syrian army’s ground offensive against the rebel organizations in the Idlib region is still bogged down. Since the fall of ISIS’s stronghold in the Lower Euphrates River, there has been a clear and ongoing increase in the scope and intensity of ISIS’s terrorist and guerrilla activity throughout Syria. In Iraq, the extensive security operation against ISIS continues. In ISIS’s various provinces in the Middle East, Africa and Asia, “routine” activity continued.

The “Foundation of the Oppressed” – A Tool for Entrenching Iranian Influence in Iraq and Syria

“The Foundation of the Oppressed” is the largest charitable foundation in Iran and the second largest economic entity in the country. Since the late 1980s, the Foundation of the Oppressed has become a large economic holding company controlling firms and groups in the sectors of services, industry, mining, energy, construction and agriculture.

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