Weekly Updates

Spotlight on Iran (September 20, 2018 – October 7, 2018)

In response to an attack that took place on September 22 against a military parade in Ahvaz, Khuzestan province in southwestern Iran, on the night of October 1, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) launched six ballistic missiles toward the Albu Kamal region in eastern Syria. Iran and Russia continue to deliberate regarding Syria. Iran is accelerating its efforts to expand its economic influence in post-war Syria. In Iraq, Iran made gains in the competition with the United States surrounding the formation of a new government in Baghdad. Iran welcomed the election of Ziad Nakhala as the new Secretary General of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (September 17 – October 3, 2018)

On September 17, 2018, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan met in Sochi, Russia. Their talks centered on the Syrian regime’s planned attack on the rebel organizations in the Idlib area. The Sochi agreement marks a breakthrough in the contacts between Russia, Turkey, and Iran to resolve the situation in Idlib, after. On September 22, 2018, five armed operatives in Ahwaz, southern Iran, attacked a parade by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack. As a result, Iran responded by firing missiles and carrying out drone attacks against ISIS targets in the Albukamal area.
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News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (September 17 – October 3, 2018)

The trend toward escalation continues in the Gaza Strip, with an increase in the frequency of riots and propaganda events and in the level of their accompanying violence. The humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip continues to deteriorate. In internal Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) elections, Ziyad al-Nakhalah was chosen as the organization's new secretary general. He replaces Ramadan Shalah, who had been in a coma since April and is hospitalized in Lebanon.
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Spotlight on Iran (September 9 – September 20, 2018)

Iran, Russia and Turkey continue to negotiate regarding Idlib’s fate. Two Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps members were killed in Syria. The Iranian ambassador to Iraq inaugurated a new building for the Iranian consulate in Basra, after the previous consulate building was set ablaze on September 7, 2018, by Iraqi protesters. Iran continues to closely follow and try to influence the process of new government formation in Baghdad, as the current Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi, announced that he does not intend to run for a second term. Senior Iranian military and political officials justified the September 8, 2018, missile strike by the IRGC on the headquarters of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan in northern Iraq
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News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (September 5-16, 2018)

While contacts for arrangement are bogged down, Hamas recently stepped up the level of violence against Israel. At the same time, the Palestinians initiate provocations and display “creative thinking” in developing tactics of disturbing and wearing down the IDF soldiers. The main event in Judea and Samaria was a stabbing attack at the entrance to a mall in the Gush Etzion Junction.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (September 6-16, 2018)

In the Idlib region, preparations for the impending campaign continue. These preparations included continued reinforcement of northern Syria and the Turkish-Syrian border by the various sides. Concurrently, intensive political activity is taking place. While ISIS is under severe pressure in Syria, its operatives continue to carry out suicide bombing attacks in various places around the world.
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