Syria

Spotlight on Iran (November 3, 2019 – November 17, 2019)

Iran vociferously condemned the IDF’s targeted killing of the senior Palestinian Islamic Jihad Commander, Bahaa’ Abu al-‘Ata. In early November, Iran and Syria signed an agreement on cooperation in the electricity sector, which includes the expansion and rehabilitation of Syria’s electrical grid by Iranian firms. Iran is working to mediate between the Shi’ite factions in the Iraqi parliament to end the ongoing crisis.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (November 7-13, 2019)

About two weeks after the killing of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, ISIS’s intensive activity in Syria continues. In Syria, attacks continue to focus on the SDF forces, the Kurdish military force. In Iraq, ISIS’s activity continues, at low intensity. Among ISIS’s various provinces around the world, one of the main events of the past week was a series of attacks against Nigerian army bases and vehicles in the northeast of the country.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (October 31 – November 6, 2019)

On October 31, 2019, four days after the killing of ISIS leader Caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, ISIS’s new spokesman officially announced the appointment of a new Caliph, codenamed Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurashi. An audiotape released by ISIS’s new spokesman calls on Muslims around the world to pledge allegiance to ISIS’s new leader and to rally around him. Even after the killing of Al-Baghdadi, ISIS’s intensive activity in Syria continues, mainly attacks against the Kurdish military force (SDF). The “routine” attacks in ISIS’s other provinces around the world continued this week, albeit at a relatively low level of intensity.
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ISIS announces appointment of new leader in place of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi

On October 31, 2019, four days after the killing of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, ISIS’s spokesman officially announced the appointment of a new leader (Caliph) for the organization, codenamed Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurashi. ISIS has refrained from revealing the real name and identity of the new leader, but in the ITIC’s assessment, he is an Iraqi senior ISIS operative. According to the spokesman, the decision on the appointment of the new leader was made the Shura Council, ISIS’s supreme institution which is authorized to make such significant decisions.
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Spotlight on Iran (October 20 – November 3, 2019)

The responses of Iranian official to the assassination of ISIS leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, reflected an Iranian attempt to minimize the significance of the American action and attribute it to domestic political calculations in the United States. Iran welcomed the agreement reached between the Russian and Turkish presidents concerning the withdrawal of Kurdish militias in northeastern Syria. Following the protests in Lebanon and Iraq, Iranian officials, chief among them Supreme Leader Khamenei, blamed the United States, Israel and Saudi Arabia for fomenting the protests. Against the backdrop of ongoing efforts to end the war in Yemen, the Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs met in Tehran the spokesman of the Houthi rebels in Yemen and discussed the latest developments in the country and ongoing political negotiations concerning the settlement of the war in Yemen.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (October 24-30, 2019)

The main event of the week was the killing of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi by an elite force of the US Army in northwestern Syria, near the border with Turkey. A few hours after the killing of Al-Baghdadi, Abu Hassan al-Muhajir was also killed. Even after the killing of Al-Baghdadi, ISIS’s routine activity on the ground continued in Syria and Iraq and in the various provinces in Africa and Asia.
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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.