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memri
July 7, 2018 No.
632

Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) Weekend Summary

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.)

Note to media and government: For a full copy of these reports, send an email with the title of the report in the subject line to [email protected]. Please include your name, title, and organization in your email.

 

EXCLUSIVE: ISIS Social Media Presence – Part I: Telegram-Based Efforts To Renew Jihadi Activity On Twitter And Facebook Presented As Vital Form Of Jihad

In recent years, the Islamic State (ISIS) has been using the Telegram instant messaging service as the main platform for its media and propaganda activity. Not only is Telegram the sole platform used by ISIS to post its official materials, it is also the main online venue for the organization's supporters, where they share news and opinions, and circulate publications by non-official and semi-official pro-ISIS outlets. However, despite its advantages – including encryption, speed, the ability to disseminate information instantly to multiple users, and the relative sustainability of channels – Telegram is a closed environment. To reach wider audiences, ISIS supporters must be present on other social networks, especially the major ones – Facebook and Twitter. Hence, ISIS media operatives are waging an ongoing campaign to increase action by ISIS supporters on these networks, and are using Telegram as a platform for organizing and launching this activity.

 

EXCLUSIVE: ISIS Claims Responsibility For The Deaths Of Four U.S. Soldiers In Eastern Syria

On July 5, 2018, the Islamic State (ISIS) news agency A'maq reported that four U.S. soldiers were killed in an explosion of multiple IEDs detonated by the group in the village of Al-Namliyyah in the Deir Al-Zour Province.

 

ISIS Weekly Claims Attack On U.S. Troops In Syria

A report in Issue 137 of ISIS's weekly Al-Naba', circulated online on June 29, 2018, claims that on June 20 ISIS fighters targeted a U.S. military Humvee on a main road in the town of Al-Hasakah with a large IED, killing three U.S. troops.

 

Taliban Reports Killing Five U.S. Soldiers With Car Bomb In Afghanistan

On July 2, 2018, the Taliban claimed responsibility for a VBIED attack on a convoy of U.S. troops near the Khadar military base in Logar province, Afghanistan.

 

Poster Distributed By Pro-ISIS Media Outlet Envisions Attack On The White House

On July 1, 2018, an English-language poster threatening an attack on the White House was published on numerous pro-Islamic State (ISIS) Telegram channels.

 

ISIS Announces That Leader's Son Was Killed In Battle In Syria; ISIS Supporters Congratulate Al-Baghdadi

On July 3, 2018, the Islamic State (ISIS) announced the death of Hudhaifah Al-Badri, the son of the organization's leader, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi. Hudhaifah was reportedly killed when he participated in a commando assault on Syrian and Russian forces in the thermal power station in Homs Province. ISIS did not disclose his exact age, but based on his photo he appears to have been a teenager.

 

Pro-ISIS Telegram Channel Publishes Poster Calling On Jihadis To Target Trains In Russia During World Cup

On June 29, 2018, a pro-Islamic State (ISIS) Telegram channel shared a poster calling on jihadis to target trains in Russia during the World Cup Tournament.

 

ISIS Claims On Telegram That Its Fighters Killed 20 Soldiers In The Philippines

On July 5, 2018, the Islamic State (ISIS) in East Asia released a statement saying that its fighters had killed 20 soldiers in clashes with the Philippine Army in the Pidsandawan region of Maguindanao province of the Philippines.

 

ISIS In Libya Releases Video Glorifying Martyrdom

On July 4, 2018, the Islamic State (ISIS) released a 26-minute video titled The Point of Death highlighting its activities in Libya's Barqah (Cyrenaica) Province.

 

Veteran Al-Qaeda Figures In Syria To Its Operatives In Daraa: Fight To The Death

As tough battles raged in late June 2018, between the regime forces and its allies and the rebel factions in the Daraa area in southern Syria, two veteran Al-Qaeda (AQ) figures in Syria – Iyad Al-Tubassi aka Abu Julaybib and Bilal Kharissat aka Abu Khadija – published a letter to the organization's operatives in which they urged them to fight to the death and not to sign any agreements to surrender to the regime.

 

Al-Qaeda Supporters Solicit Donations Via WhatsApp For Jihad In Syria

On July 1, 2018, a poster was distributed on a pro-Al-Qaeda (AQ) Telegram channel, soliciting donations for jihad fighters in Daraa and northern Syria.

 

Al-Qaeda In Mali (GSIM) Claims Responsibility For Two Attacks: One On International And One On French Troops

On June 30, 2018, the Al-Qaeda-affiliated organization Jama'at Nusrat Al-Islam Wal-Muslimeen (The Group for Support of Islam and Muslims – GSIM) released a statement claiming responsibility for an attack on the headquarters of the G5 Sahel Group in the central Malian city of Sevare.

 

Reports About Drone Attacks On Khmeimim Russian Air Base; Suspicion Of Turkestan Islamic Party (TIP) Involvement

Various media outlets reported that on the night of June 30, 2018, the aerial defense systems at the Russian Khmeimim Air Base in Syria located drones flying near the base and brought them down without injuring people or damaging property on the base.

 

Turkestan Islamic Party (TIP) Expresses Willingness To Form Coalition With Other Jihadi Groups To Defend Daraa, Syria

In a June 27, 2018 communique posted on Telegram, the Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP) declared that it was ready and willing to form a military coalition with other jihadi groups to defend the city of Daraa, Syria and its people from the army of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad and its allies.

 

Mumbai-Based Editors Advocate Jihad: 'Ghazwa-e-Badr Is Islam's Philosophy Of Jihad And The Point Of Its Beginning'

Mumbai is the financial metropolis of India and the capital of the western state of Maharashtra. In 2014, before Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi declared himself the Emir-ul-Momineen ("Leader of the Muslims") heading the Islamic State (ISIS), four young Muslims from the city had migrated to Iraq and Syria and joined his jihadi organization.

 

Jaish-e-Muhammad Emir In Message Shared On Telegram: 'The Final Decision [On Kashmir]... The Klashnikov-Holding Mujahideen Will Make'

On June 28, 2018, a message from Maulana Masood Azhar, emir of Pakistan-based jihadi group Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM), was shared on a Telegram channel. The message argued that the jihad underway in the Kashmir Valley is "a sacred movement."

 

Afghan Taliban Critique U.S.-Sponsored Conferences Of Islamic Scholars, Say: 'Helping The American Tyrant Is A Great Sin And Deviation From Islam'

On June 26, 2018, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the Taliban organization) released a statement critiquing the participation of Islamic scholars from Afghanistan and elsewhere in conferences sponsored by the U.S. on the issue of peace in Afghanistan.

 

Afghan Taliban: 'The Remarks Of NATO Secretary General Prove That This Jihad Is Not An Intra-Afghan War'

On June 23, 2018, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the Taliban organization) released on its English-language website a statement in response to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg's argument that peace in Afghanistan can only be achieved in the presence of foreign troops. This position contradicts the Taliban position that peace cannot be established in Afghanistan so long as foreign troops are based there.

 

Afghan Taliban Dismiss Reports Of Talks With Afghan Government As Propaganda

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the Taliban organization) has rejected media reports that its officials are engaged in peace negotiations with the Afghan government.