May 23, 2020 Special Announcements No. 917

Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) Weekend Summary: Week of May 16-23, 2020

May 23, 2020
Special Announcements No. 917

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: Urdu Daily: One Day After Signing U.S.-Taliban Agreement In Qatar, Taliban Launched Plan For 'Large Attacks' To Take Over Kabul And Key Afghan Provinces

The following report is now a complimentary offering from MEMRI's Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM). For JTTM subscription information, click here.

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the Taliban organization) aims to occupy Kabul and other provinces and has prepared plans for "large attacks" after President Ashraf Ghani ordered Afghan security forces to go on the offensive against them across Afghanistan, according to an Urdu daily.


Exclusive: In Eid Al-Fitr Message, Afghan Taliban Emir Emphasizes Jihad, Says U.S.-Taliban Pact Is Powerful For Establishing 'An Islamic System'

The emir of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the Taliban organization), has issued a statement greeting the people of Afghanistan and the Taliban on the occasion of Eid Al-Fitr, which marks the end of the fasting month of Ramadan.


Exclusive: British Islamist Preacher Joins New Social Network That Rewards User Activity With Cryptocurrency

A British UK-based Islamist preacher who is active on several social media platforms, including Facebook and Telegram, has recently joined the new social media app that will allow users to monetize their social media activity by awarding them in-app tokens, which can then be exchanged for cryptocurrency.


Exclusive: Senior Al-Qaeda Leader Urges Americans, Europeans To Pressure Their Governments To Withdraw Forces From Middle East – So They Can Direct Efforts To Dealing With Coronavirus Economic Crisis At Home

A senior leader of Al-Qaeda in Syria recently published an open letter to the people of the US and Europe, calling on them to pressure their governments to pull their military forces out of the Middle East. Such a move would help those countries deal with the economic aftermath of the Corona virus pandemic, he claimed.


Exclusive: Pro-Al-Qaeda Media Outlet Hails Pensacola Shooting Following U.S. Confirmation Of Al-Qaeda In The Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) Culpability

Pro-Al-Qaeda media outlets reported the US Department of Justice announcement that the FBI had unlocked the encryption on the phone of the perpetrator of the NAS Pensacola shooting, and confirmed that he was tied to Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).


Exclusive: Amid COVID-19, ISIS Supporters Step Up Efforts To Reestablish Presence On Social Media

Recent weeks have seen a spike in media activity from supporters of the Islamic State (ISIS). There has been an increase in the launching of Facebook accounts, the opening of new media outlets and increased activity by established ones, Telegram channels, and other media and propaganda ventures. It appears that ISIS supporters have been taking advantage of a reduction in the prevention activity by internet companies during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Exclusive: ISIS' Weekly Editorial Condemns Leaders Of Rebel Factions In Syria For Accepting Funds, Support From Foreign Countries

On May 21, 2020, the Islamic State (ISIS) released its weekly newspaper, which included an editorial condemning the leaders of rebel and jihadi factions in Syria for accepting funds and support from foreign countries.


In Video, Al-Qaeda Leader  Ayman Al-Zawahiri Criticizes 'Ugly Face' Of Atheism, 'Value-Neutral, Irreligious Western Materialism'

On May 19, 2020, Al-Qaeda's media wing released a video featuring Al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri presenting the second episode of his rebuttal against atheism.


Syria-Based Al-Qaeda Affiliate Solicits Donations, Provides WhatsApp Contact

A Telegram channel affiliated with the Kurdish jihadi group Ansar Al-Islam, published a post soliciting funds for the organization. Ansar Al-Islam is one of the factions comprising the Al-Qaeda-affiliated Incite the Believers operations room that operates in Syria's Idlib region.


Turkestan Islamic Party (TIP) Ramadan Outreach Campaign Emphasizes Bonds Between Locals And Foreign Fighters

In recent weeks, the Turkestan Islamic Party (TIP) has been running an outreach campaign for residents in the rebel-held areas in northern Syria. The TIP has been promoting the campaign in recent weeks, highlighting the participation of its Uyghur members in distributing food and aid to local residents, in order to demonstrate the bond between local and foreign Muslims.


Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) In Syria Releases Photos Showing Graduation Of Mujahideen, Largest Graduating Class Of Elite Fighters

The Syrian jihadi group Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) released on Telegram two sets of photos showing the graduation of two groups of fighters, including the group's elite fighters.


Syria-Based U.S. Journalist Streams Online Interview With British Islamist Preacher, Urges Viewers To Donate On Patreon Website

A Syria-based American journalist, who runs a news outlet focusing on Islamist and jihadi fighters in Syria, conducted an interview with a British Islamist preacher. The interview was streamed live on YouTube, and included a call for viewers do donate to the news outlet via its Patreon page.


ISIS Launches Third 'Raid Of Attrition' Campaign

The Islamic State (ISIS) launched a new campaign of attacks in all of its regions of operation, dubbed "The Raid of Attrition." This is the third campaign under this title in as many years.


ISIS Releases Video Showing 'Attrition' Attacks In Iraq

The Islamic State's (ISIS) Wilayat Al-'Iraq ("Iraq Province"), released a lengthy video detailing the group's "attrition" operations in Iraq against the Iraqi military and security forces and fighters from the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU).


Pro-ISIS Telegram Channel Publishes Series Of Posters Highlighting ISIS Threats Against U.S., Europe, And Jews

A pro-Islamic State (ISIS) Telegram channel published a series of posters highlighting ISIS's intention to attack the U.S, Europe, and Israel and praising ISIS's recently launched "Raids Of Attrition" campaign.


ISIS Editorial Claims Iraqi Army Is On The Brink Of Defeat, Lists Factors Including Decline Of U.S. Logistics Support, Political Crisis, And Internal Conflict Between Shi'ite Militias

The Islamic State (ISIS) released its weekly newspaper which included an editorial claiming that the Iraqi army is on the brink of defeat, and that its soldiers are psychologically defeated. The editorial lists several factors which have contributed to its claim, including the retreat of U.S. logistical support, the current political crises, shortages in funding, and the internal conflict between Shi'ite militias.


In Weekly Newspaper, ISIS Claims Katyusha Rocket Attack On Three Libyan National Army Outposts


The Islamic State's (ISIS) weekly Arabic-language newspaper published a report claiming responsibility for a Katyusha rocket attack on three military outposts of the Libyan National Army.


ISIS Supporters Deny Reports Linking ISIS To Attack On Afghanistan Maternity Clinic, Suggest Targeting Journalists Who Spread Such News

On May 13, 2020, Islamic State (ISIS) supporters and active users of an ISIS-operated Rocket.Chat published posts condemning journalists who link ISIS to the attack on a maternity clinic in Kabul, Afghanistan, suggesting instead that the journalists who spread such news be targeted.


ISIS Claims Killing Of French Soldier In Mali

An issue of the Islamic State (ISIS) weekly published a report detailing the group's operations in Wilayat Gharb Ifriqiyah ("West Africa Province"), and saying that two ISIS fighters clashed with a French force in Mali and killed at least one French soldier.


Jihadi Social Media – Account Review (JSM-AR): ISIS Man Hacks Into Facebook Account Of British Woman, Shares Pro-ISIS Content Including Pledge Of Allegiance To ISIS Leader

It appears that a pro-ISIS man gained access to the Facebook account woman living in the U.K. and changed the password so she could longer use it. The account praises ISIS and posts photos of a person wearing a hijab.


Jihadi Social Media – Account Review (JSM-AR): On Facebook, Canadian Man Posts Speeches By Al-'Awlaki, HTS Leader Al-Joulani, Retweets Posts Eulogizing Syrian Mujahideen

A Facebook users posts in favor of the mujahideen in Syria, and in particular he appears to be pro-Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS). He has shared a few videos from Bilal Abdul Kareem, a Syria-based American media activist who runs the pro-HTS On The Ground News platform, as well as a speech by HTS leader Abu Muhammad Al-Joulani.


Jihadi Social Media – Account Review (JSM-AR): Telegram Channel Posts Letters From Female ISIS Supporters In Al-Hol Camp In English, French, German, Malay, Arabic, Gives Swedish, Dutch Phone Numbers

Female Islamic State (ISIS) supporters detained in the Al-Hol Camp, many of whom are widows of slain ISIS fighters, wrote letters asking for money, which were published on a pro-ISIS Telegram channel.

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