Weekly Updates

Spotlight on Global Jihad (April 4-10, 2019)

The SDF forces have finished mopping up the Al-Baghouz area from the presence of ISIS operatives. In the Idlib area, exchanges of fire continue between the Syrian army and the Headquarters for the Liberation of Al-Sham and other jihadi organizations. In the Al-Sukhnah area, ISIS released a video showing the bodies of two Russian officers and a captive Syrian soldier. The video apparently shows the aftermath of an ambush set by ISIS operatives for a Syrian-Russian convoy on the road leading from Al-Sukhnah to Deir ez-Zor (March 17, 2019).
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News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (April 3– April 8, 2019)

This past week events focused on the Friday return march, attended by about 10,000 Palestinians. The level of violence demonstrated was relatively low. This past week senior Hamas figures often made references to the understandings achieved through Egyptian mediation for an arrangement. The security prisoners in Israeli jails announced that they would begin a hunger strike on April 7, 2019.
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Spotlight on Iran (March 24, 2019 – April 7, 2019)

Syrian opposition sources reported that at least seven people were killed in the strike attributed to Israel in the Sheikh Najjar area in northwestern Aleppo city, on the night of March 27-28. Senior Iranian officials condemned the decision of President Trump to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights and described it as a grave violation of international law. The Syrian government approved the agreement signed between the Syrian Electricity Ministry and the Iranian energy and infrastructure giant, MAPNA, to build a power plant in Lattakia. The Deputy Head of Hamas’ Political Bureau, Salah al-Arouri, declared in a media interview that Hamas is determined to bolster ties with Iran, and that the practical implications of this improvement in relations is already evident on the ground.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (March 28 – April 3, 2019)

Even after the fall of ISIS’s “pocket” in the Al-Baghouz region, SDF forces continue to mop up the village and the surrounding area. In the meantime, ISIS continues to carry out acts of terrorism and guerrilla warfare in the Syrian arena. The Syrian army and the security forces of the SDF are employing counterterrorism measures against ISIS’s guerrilla activity.
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News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (March 27– April 2, 2019)

Events this past week focused on the return march held on Saturday, March 30, 2019, which marked the first anniversary of the return marches as well as Israeli Arab Land Day. In the meantime, tensions increased in the jails in Israel in the wake of the intention of the Israeli Prison Service to install devices to block the prisoners' cellular reception. Senior Hamas figures raised before the members of the Egyptian mediators' delegation the so-called "worsening" of the prisoners' conditions. Hamas also complained to the UN envoy to the Middle East.
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Spotlight on Global Jihad (March 21-27, 2019)

The area of the village of Al-Baghouz fell this week into the hands of the SDF forces, ending the campaign which lasted more than six months to take over ISIS’s control area in the Lower Euphrates Valley. SDF spokesmen announced the destruction of ISIS and the end of ISIS’s control in the last “pocket” of Al-Baghouz. President Trump and senior US officials announced that the United States and its allies had liberated all the areas that had been under ISIS’s control in Syria and Iraq. At the propaganda level, ISIS continues its efforts to address its defeat. The loss of ISIS’s control area in the Lower Euphrates Valley marks the end of a process in which ISIS lost the rest of its control areas in Syria over the past year. Against the backdrop of the fall of ISIS in Syria, the intensive activity of the organization’s provinces throughout the world is salient. Prominent events that took place this week
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