Weekly Updates

Spotlight on Global Jihad (August 20-26, 2020)

In the Idlib region, clashes continued between the Syrian army and the Headquarters for the Liberation of Al-Sham mainly in the areas southwest and south of Idlib. ISIS continued its routine activity in the various provinces around the world. ISIS operatives killed a senior Iraqi officer with the rank of colonel (aqid) during a chase. The Sinai Province continues to wage war against the Egyptian army in villages in the Rabi’a region, over a month after the showcase attack against the army camp near Rabi’a. According to several reports (requiring verification), ISIS leader (emir) in Yemen was ambushed and killed by the Houthi rebels this week.

News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (August 19 – 25, 2020)

This past week Hamas-initiated tension and the deterioration of the security situation in the Gaza Strip continued. The events focused on the launching of IED and incendiary balloons which daily cause dozens of fires near Israeli communities. On August 24, 2020 four active cases of Covid-19 were detected in the al-Maghazi refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip; all four were members of the same family. They were the first Covid-19 cases detected inside the Gaza Strip which were not brought in through the crossings. Will the worsening of the Covid-19 crisis in Gaza relax the current tension or increase Hamas pressure on Israel to the point of escalation? So far there is no answer.

Spotlight on Iran (August 9, 2020 – August 23, 2020)

In mid-August, the Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mohammad Javad Zarif, visited Lebanon following the explosion at the port of Beirut. Zarif discussed with senior Lebanese officials continued efforts to provide Iranian support to Lebanon following the disaster. The special adviser on political affairs to the Iranian minister of foreign affairs visited Damascus and met with the Syrian president and Syrian minister of foreign affairs. On August 16, the Commander of the IRGC’s Qods Force, Esmail Qa’ani, arrived for a visit in Baghdad. As expected, Iran condemned the normalization agreement reached between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel.

Spotlight on Global Jihad (August 13-19, 2020)

This week as well, high-intensity incidents continued in the Idlib region between the Syrian army and the Headquarters for the Liberation of Al-Sham and the other rebel organizations. One noteworthy attack this week was the activation of an IED against one of the Turkish vehicles in the joint Russian-Turkish patrols. A network calling itself the Chechen Khattab Brigades claimed responsibility for the attack. After the end of the wave of attacks (the “Raids of Attrition”), ISIS resumed its “routine” attacks.

News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (August 12 – 18, 2020)

The violence near the Gaza Strip border initiated by Hamas continues. Dozens of IED and incendiary balloons were launched daily and riots were held near the border fence at night. In response, the IDF attacked targets in the Gaza Strip, most of them belonging to Hamas. There was stabbing attack in the Old City of Jerusalem. A Palestinian from a nearby town stabbed and wounded a Border Police fighter. The agreement to normalize Israel-UAE relations has led to a wave of strong protest from the Palestinian Authority (PA) and the Palestinian terrorist organizations.

Spotlight on Global Jihad (August 6-12, 2020)

Following the wave of attacks referred to by ISIS as the Raids of Attrition, there has been a decrease in the number of ISIS attacks around the world, and its activity in the various provinces has resumed its “routine” characteristics. One noteworthy attack last week was carried out by ISIS against the Mozambican army in the northeast part of the country. The latest issue of ISIS’s Al-Naba' weekly included an article calling for the release of prisoners by force. In the ITIC’s assessment, the article was published in light of the attack on the prison in Nangarhar (Afghanistan), which may have increased ISIS’s motivation to carry out additional attacks to release the prisoners, especially in Syria and Iraq.

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