Syria

Spotlight on Iran (June 14, 2020 – June 28, 2020)

An Iranian news website published an article discussing the changing patterns of activity of the Qods Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) following the assassination of Qasem Soleimani. The Iranian news agency Tasnim reported that the Commander of the IRGC's Qods Force, Esmail Qa'ani, visited the Albu Kamal area on the Syrian side of the Syrian-Iraqi border. Following the entry into force of the Caesar Act, which tightened sanctions on Syria, Iran reiterated its commitment to maintain economic cooperation with Syria. Iran is maintaining its efforts to preserve its interests in Iraq under the changing circumstances created following the appointment of Mustafa al-Kazimi as Iraq’s Prime Minister.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (June 18-24, 2020)

The ceasefire is being maintained in the Idlib region of northern Syria, but there has been an increase in the intensity of local incidents. ISIS’s activity around the globe continues at low intensity, a trend that has been going on for several weeks. At the same time, disruptions of ISIS’s media system continue, The Iraq Province continues to be ISIS’s most active province.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (June 11-17, 2020)

This week there was an additional decline in the scope of ISIS’s activity around the globe, as part of a trend that has lasted for several weeks. In Borno State, in northeastern Nigeria, ISIS’s West Africa Province (reportedly) carried out a series of multi-casualty attacks. ISIS’s difficulties with its media network: ISIS’s Amaq News Agency has significantly reduced its publications. Routine reports from the various provinces have been significantly reduced, and Telegram (which serves as ISIS’s central distribution platform) continues to shut down ISIS-affiliated accounts.
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Spotlight on Iran (May 31, 2020 – June 14, 2020)

Sources tracking the movement of freighter planes reported intensive activity between Iran and Syria, which included both Syrian and Iranian cargo planes. The spokesman of the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs lambasted the tightening of sanctions against Syria ahead of the entry into force of the Caesar Act, which places sanctions against any company and actor that will maintain economic ties with Syria in several sectors of the economy. Ahead of the start of the strategic dialogue between Iraq and the United States, the Commander of the Qods Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), Esmail Qa’ani, visited Baghdad, likely to coordinate a united front with senior commanders of the Iraqi factions loyal to Iran.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (June 4-10, 2020)

In the past two weeks, there has been a decrease in ISIS’s activity in the various provinces, after it concentrated its effort on carrying out the wave of attacks in the second half of May (the Raids of Attrition). In the Idlib area, the erosion of the ceasefire agreement reached between Russia and Turkey is evident.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (May 27 – June 3, 2020)

Over the past week, there was a decrease in the intensity of ISIS’s activity in Iraq, Syria and the various provinces around the globe. Most of the attacks carried out by ISIS as part of the Rates of Attrition were in Iraq (132, about 58%), followed by Syria (51, about 22%). An editorial published in ISIS’s Al-Naba’ weekly discusses the ISIS’s current strategic concept.
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Syria

Syria is a central factor in the Arab-Israeli conflict and has been in conflict with the State of Israel since its establishment. Syria’s basic position rejects the Zionist idea and views the State of Israel as a foreign element that must be uprooted. Since its establishment, Syria has led the political and military struggle against pre-state Israel and the State of Israel. Syria is demanding that Israel give up its control over an area of about 1,200 square kilometers in the Golan Heights, which was occupied by Israel in 1967. In view of its profound hostility to Israel, Syria has supported the Palestinian terrorist organizations and Hezbollah for many years. Syria was designated as a terrorism-supporting state by the US State Department back in 1979.  

Despite repeated attempts since the early 1990s to reach a peace agreement with Syria, an official state of war still exists between it and Israel. These relations have been influenced by the involvement of elements such as the Soviet Union and Iran, Syria’s relations with other Arab countries (Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon) and its relations with the Palestinians. These relations have also been influenced by the fact that Syria perceives Israel’s territory as part of what it calls Greater Syria.

Since early 2011, there has been a civil war in Syria between President Bashar Assad and the forces loyal to him, and rebel organizations with various ideologies and political orientation. The civil war has led to the destruction of the country’s infrastructure, the removal of Syria from the Arab League, and tension in its relations with Sunni countries (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan and Turkey). Syria’s relations with the United States and Western countries have also deteriorated. On the other hand, the Syrian regime is supported by Russia, Iran and Hezbollah, and by Shiite militias supported by Iran.