Weekly Updates

Spotlight on Iran (November 15, 2020 – November 29, 2020)

Senior Iranian officials have avoided publicly commenting on the statement of the IDF spokesperson about Israeli strikes on targets of the Syrian Army and Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) after explosive devices were discovered in two locations on the Syrian-Israeli border on the Golan Heights. The Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs Zarif and the special adviser to the speaker of the Majlis met in Tehran with the UN Special Envoy for Syria, Geir Pedersen. In mid-November, the Iraqi minister of defense visited Tehran and met senior Iranian officials, including the minister of defense, the chief of staff of the Armed Forces, the commander of the IRGC and the secretary of the Supreme National Security Council.

Spotlight on Global Jihad (November 19-25, 2020)

In the Idlib region, exchanges of artillery fire continued between the Syrian army and the rebel organizations, mainly Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS). ISIS’s provinces in Africa and Asia continued their routine activity. Noteworthy examples: Syria: This week, ISIS’s intensive activity in the desert regions of eastern Syria continued. Iraq: A police officer with the rank of colonel was ambushed and killed along with nine other policemen in the Salah al-Din Province.

News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (November 18 – 24, 2020)

In the Gaza Strip the sharp rise in Covid-19 cases continues. In Judea and Samaria as well, the sharp rise in Covid-19 cases continues, with 7,843 active cases. This past week two rockets were fired at the southern Israeli coastal city of Ashqelon. In Judea and Samaria Palestinians continued throwing stones and Molotov cocktails at Israeli vehicles. The most prominent political event this past week was the announcement made by Hussein al-Sheikh, a close associate of Mahmoud Abbas, of the Palestinian Authority's renewal of civilian and security coordination with Israel, returning to the status quo ante of May 19, 2020.

Spotlight on Global Jihad (November 12-18, 2020)

In the Idlib region, routine incidents continued between the Syrian army and the rebel organizations, chiefly Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS). The incidents included artillery exchanges, Russian airstrikes, and sniper fire. One noteworthy attack by ISIS’s provinces this week was the detonation of an IED at a cemetery in Jeddah during a memorial service commemorating the end of World War I. ISIS continued its routine activities in its other provinces in Asia and Africa.

News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (November 11 – 17, 2020)

In the Gaza Strip, Judea and Samaria the number of Covid-19 cases continues to rise. On November 15, 2020, two rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip. Sirens were sounded in the southern Israeli city of Ashdod and along the coastal plain. In Judea and Samaria no significant terrorist attacks were carried out this past week. In Gaza a ceremony was held to mark the anniversaries of the deaths of Bahaa Abu al-Atta and Iyad Sawalha, both senior Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) terrorist operatives

Spotlight on Iran (November 1, 2020 – November 15, 2020)

The Senior Adviser to the Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ali-Asghar Khaji visited Damascus and met with President Assad and discussed the ongoing negotiations process concerning the settlement of the war in Syria, regional developments and bilateral relations. The Iranian deputy minister of defense visited Baghdad at the helm of a delegation made up of senior military and security officials, and met with high-ranking Iraqi officials, chief among them the national security adviser and the Iraqi minister of interior. Growing Iranian concerns about efforts to stymie its economic activity in Syria and Iraq. Iranian media outlets reported that the agreement, reached during the visit to Iraq of the governor of the Iranian Central Bank concerning the release of Iranian funds frozen in Iraqi banks, is gradually being implemented.

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