The following are some of this week's reports from the MEMRI Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) Project, which translates and analyzes content from sources monitored around the clock, among them the most important jihadi websites and blogs. (To view these reports in full, you must be a paying member of the JTTM; for membership information, send an email to [email protected] with "Membership" in the subject line.)
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On March 23, 2018, the Islamic State's (ISIS) A'maq news agency published a statement claiming responsibility for the same-day attack in the southern French town of Trebes. At least two people have been reportedly killed after a gunman took an unknown number of hostages at a local supermarket. The gunman has been neutralized. Citing a "security source," the statement referred to the attacker as a solider of the Islamic State who carried out the attack in response to its call to target coalition countries fighting it. The claim was posted on the ISIS-affiliated Nasher News outlets on Telegram.
By: R. Green
An Instagram user writing entirely in English frequently expresses his support for the Islamic State (ISIS). He has also posted three photos taken in Washington D.C.
Between March 8 and March 11, 2018, the French-language media outlet of the Islamic State (ISIS) "An-Nur Media Center" published three posters calling on supporters to participate in the battle on the media front. Such calls have been made repeatedly by ISIS media bodies over the years, in particular by the French-language media office. The latest official ISIS posters, as well as other recently released materials in French, indicate that ISIS media operatives understand the critical role played by their online supporters, often referred to as "mujahideen of the media," with respect to the group's ability to maintain its online presence.
An Instagram user writing entirely in English frequently expresses his support for the Islamic State (ISIS). He has also posted three photos taken in Washington D.C. On March 18, 2018.
On March 21, 2018, the Islamic State (ISIS) claimed that an attack on policemen in Grozny, Chechnya, was carried out by "an Islamic State fighter." A short video released by the ISIS A'maq news agency features a message from a man who is said to be the attacker.
On March 21, 2018, the Islamic State (ISIS) affiliated group Jaysh Khalid Bin Al-Walid (JKBW), which is active in the Yarmouk Basin in southern Syria, released a six-minute video in Arabic featuring a boys' school that it is operating in one of the villages in the area under its control.
On March 15, 2018, Ashhad Media, a pro-Islamic State (ISIS) outlet, released on Telegram a graphic calling for attacks and featuring a previously published image of an ISIS supporter in New York City. The graphic reads: "Answer the call Hunt them o Muwahhidin. Go And Answer The Call Don't Spare None Kill Them All."
JTTM subscribers can view this video here.
On March 21, 2018, Al-Qaeda released a new video of a speech from its leader, Ayman Al-Zawahiri, in which he seeks to rally the Muslim world to focus on what he views as the No. 1 enemy of the Muslims– the U.S.
On March 17, 2018, the official media agency of the Al-Qaeda-affiliated organization Jama'at Nusrat Al-Islam Wal-Muslimin (the Group for Support of Islam and Muslims, GSIM), Al-Zalaqa News, released an audio recording of Yahya Abu Al-Humam, deputy emir (leader) of the organization, with the title, "With Patience You Will Win."
On March 21, 2018, the Mali-based Al-Qaeda-affiliated Group for Supporting Islam and Muslims (GSIM) released the second installment in its video series "Deterring the Tyrants."
On March 15, 2018, Issue 123 of the Islamic State (ISIS) weekly Al-Naba' was released online. An editorial in the issue lashed out at the Tunisian government's ongoing attempts to pass different pieces of legislation that stand in clear contrast to the shari'a. The editorial also criticizes the Islamic parties in the government, which adopted democracy under various pretenses, for doing so only for personal and political gain.
On March 21, 2018, the French Islamic State (ISIS) media outlet An-Nur Media Center published a poster calling on ISIS supporters to target a specific French national who fought against the organization as a member of the PKK.
On March 20, 2018, an Islamic State (ISIS) media operative reported the death of French fighter Soufian Abrougui aka Abou Adam. Published on Telegram, the report was accompanied by a picture of the dead French national and stated that he was killed in December while fighting against the Kurdish forces of the PKK. Abrougui was an important member of the core of French ISIS fighters.
On March 14, 2018, a pro-Islamic State (ISIS) media outlet published on Telegram a graphic threatening the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia and soccer star Lionel Messi.
In recent months, different terror organizations have sought to associate their names with the three terrorists killed by Indian security forces on the night of March 11, 2018, in an operation at Hakoora in the Anantnag district of Jammu and Kashmir. The three terrorists were identified as: Mohammad Taufeeq aka Abu Zarr Al-Hindi, Abu Barra Al-Kashmiri aka Syed Owais Shafi, and Eisa Ruhollah Khatab Al-Kashmiri aka Eisa Fazili aka Abu Yahya Al-Kashmiri.
Ansar Ghazwatul Hind ("Supporters Of The Battle Of India," AGH), a group of Kashmiri militants owing allegiance to Al-Qaeda, has claimed the "martyrdom" of three of its members in a clash with Indian security forces in the Balhama area of Srinagar, the capital of Jammu and Kashmir.
Addressing a conference in memory of jihadi martyrs, a leading commander of Pakistani jihadi group Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) has warned: "The reciters of Kalima Taiyyaba will soon land in India as idol-breakers." Kalima Taiyyaba refers to the words uttered to proclaim one's faith in Islam. The words are: "There is no deity but Allah, and Muhammad is His messenger."
The chief of Pakistani jihadi organization Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) for Jammu and Kashmir has paid tribute to militants killed by Indian security forces recently during operations in the towns of Srinagar, Budgam, and Bandipora, according to a Kashmiri website. Mehmood Shah, the LeT chief for Jammu and Kashmir, said: "The youth of Kashmir have denied the illegal Indian occupation. India has never faced such a brave and courageous nation in history." He added: "With the martyrdom of one freedom fighter, the people stand up in support."
This report shows some cartoons recently published by Pakistan-based Urdu weekly Haftroza Al-Qalam, which belongs to Al-Rehmat Trust, an arm of the leading Pakistani jihadi organization Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) headed by Maulana Masood Azhar.
On March 20, 2018, the Telegram channels of the Islamic State (ISIS)-affiliated Nasher News published a shortened URL that linked to the new ISIS Internet radio station Al-Bayan. Nasher has posted links to Al-Bayan websites in the past, as these websites tend to get frequently reported and shut down. However, the current Al-Bayan website is interesting for a number of reasons.
On March 19, 2018, an Islamic State (ISIS) supporter on Facebook announced his return to the platform after a suspension.
In late 2017, YouTube removed from its website most of the videos of sermons by the late Yemeni-American sheikh and Al-Qaeda figure Anwar Al-'Awlaki. Searches for the cleric in English on YouTube now mainly yield news reports about Al-'Awlaki's death, but his supporters remain defiant on social media.
"On 15th of March during the National Day of Martyrs gathering in Herat, the former governor of this province – Muhammad Ismail Khan – called on the Islamic Emirate to hold talks with the great family of jihad [i.e. the former jihadi leaders] to find a solution to the tragedy and war in our homeland if they [the Taliban] do not wish to respond to the overtures of the Unity Government [of President Ashraf Ghani]."
The National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) of Pakistan has launched an app for reporting hate speech and extremism. Known as Chaukas ("Alert"), a description on the Google Play Store notes that the app is "a user friendly mobile app to enable a common citizen to report any hate speech or extremist content in the form of video, audio, photo and URL/text visible to them."