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February 4, 2022 Special Announcements No. 1168

Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) Weekly: January 29 – February 5, 2022

February 4, 2022
Special Announcements No. 1168

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: Reacting To President Biden's Announcement That ISIS Leader Has Been Killed, ISIS Supporters Remain Doubtful, Await Official ISIS Statement

Following today's announcement by U.S. President Joe Biden that Islamic State (ISIS) leader Abu Ibrahim Al-Qurayshi has been killed, ISIS supporters online cast doubt on the news, urging other supporters to wait for an official response from ISIS media.

 

EXCLUSIVE: Suggesting Collusion With The U.S., Al-Qaeda Supporters Criticize HTS For Enabling 'Crusader' Raid On ISIS Leader And Muslims In Syria While Claiming To Be The Defenders Of Sunnis

Following U.S. President Joe Biden's announcement that Islamic State (ISIS) leader Abu Ibrahim Al-Hashimi Al-Qurayshi has been "removed" in a raid conducted by U.S. special forces in northern Syria, Al-Qaeda supporters online suggested that there was coordination between the United States and Syrian jihadi group Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS), which largely controls Idlib in Syria, and castigated the group for allowing "Crusaders" to kill Muslims and for targeting "the faithful mujahideen," a reference to Al-Qaeda members, in their security campaigns.

 

EXCLUSIVE: Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) Refrains From Commenting On Killing Of ISIS Top Leader As Rivals Accuse Al-Joulani Of Collusion

Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS), a Sunni jihadi group currently controlling large parts of Idlib in northern Syria, has not yet addressed the reported death of Islamic State (ISIS) leader Ibrahim Al-Qurayshi in a U.S. military operation that took place in Atmeh, Idlib, as announced by President Joe Biden on February 3, 2022.

 

According To ISIS Figures, ISIS Attacks Worldwide Declined Since 2019, But African Provinces Show Increase

On January 9, 2022, the pro-Islamic State (ISIS) Amaq News Agency published an infographic listing all attacks carried out by the group in 2021.

 

ISIS Editorial Reiterates: ISIS Is Undefeated, Emerged Victorious In Recent Syria Prison Break

On January 27, 2022, the Islamic State (ISIS) released issue number 323 of its weekly newspaper, Al-Naba', which included an editorial reiterating ISIS's claim that it has not been defeated, saying that the mujahideen have emerged victorious from the recent attack on the Al-Sina'ah Central Prison in the Ghuwayran neighborhood of Al-Hasakah city in northeastern Syria.

 

ISIS Weekly Claims 12 Inghimasi Fighters Carried Out Syria Prison Attack, Reports 260 Syrian Democratic Forces Casualties

On January 26, 2022, Issue 323 of the official weekly newspaper of the Islamic State (ISIS), Al-Naba', published a report providing "exclusive" details about the January 20 attack on the Al-Sina'ah central prison in the Ghuwayran neighborhood of Al-Hasakah city in northeastern Syria, which is operated by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

 

ISIS Claims Responsibility For Two Attacks Against US Forces in Northeast Syria

At the end of January 2022, the Islamic State (ISIS) claimed responsibility for two attacks on American forces and others near Ghuwayran Prison in Al-Hasakah, in northeast Syria.

 

Dozens Of Lebanese Join Islamic State (ISIS) In Iraq In Recent Months; Several Die In Clashes With Security Forces

During the month of January 2022, Iraqi security apparatuses reported that several operatives from the Islamic State (ISIS) who were killed in clashes with Iraqi security forces across the country, were Lebanese citizens. These reports reinforced others in the Lebanese and Arab press, according to which several dozen young men from Lebanon crossed illegally into Syria and joined ISIS in Iraq over the past few months.

 

Pro-ISIS Media Outlet Releases Posters Boasting About Bravery, Determination Of ISIS Fighters Who Carried Out Coordinated Attack On Al-Hasakah Prison

On January 26, 2022, Al-Murhafat, a pro-Islamic State (ISIS) media foundation, released several posters boasting about the bravery and determination of ISIS fighters who carried out coordinated attacks to free hundreds of prisoners from the Al-Sina'ah central prison in the Ghuwayran neighborhood of Al-Hasakah city in northeastern Syria, which is operated by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

 

English-Language Magazine Linked To British Pro-ISIS Preacher Highlights Oppression Of Muslims By Indian Subcontinent Governments, Urges Muslims To 'Support Their Brothers By Any Means'

On January 26, 2022, British pro-Islamic State (ISIS) preacher Anjem Choudary posted the third issue of an English-language magazine on his blog.

 

Following ISIS Prison Break In Syria, British Pro-ISIS Preacher Renews Call To Free Muslims Detained In SDF Camps, Accuses U.S., UK Of Ordering Their Torture

On January 30, 2022, a pro-Islamic State (ISIS) British preacher published a press release on his official blog commenting on ISIS's attack on the Al-Sina'a prison in Ghuwayran area in Al-Hasakah Governorate, northeastern Syria., which took place on January 20.

 

Pro-ISIS Channels And Clerics, Including Anjem Choudary, Abu Baraa, And Abdallah Al Faisal, Are Featured On Blockchain-Based Video Streaming Platform Odysee, Popular With Neo-Nazis, Other Extremists

Some jihadis have started using Odysee, an American video-sharing platform which gained prominence in March 2021 when numerous neo-Nazis and white supremacists joined the platform as an alternative to YouTube and BitChute.

 

On Facebook, U.S.-Based Jihadi Claims Authorities Raided His Home And Seized His Cell Phones

An American jihadi recently wrote in a Facebook post that authorities raided his home and seized his cell phones.

 

Al-Qaeda Supporter Criticizes ISIS Media Coverage of Ghuwayran Prison Break, Claims ISIS Paints Rosy Picture To Cover Up Its Massacres

On January 31, 2022, a user of the Al-Qaeda-operated Rocket.Chat server criticized recent reporting by the Islamic State (ISIS) on its operatives' raid on Ghuwayran prison in Al-Hassakah, Syria, in late January 2022.

 

Saudi-Owned Al-Arabiya TV: Al-Qaeda's Bin Laden And Iran's Soleimani Met In Sudan To Discuss Training Operatives In Explosives Under Lebanese Hizbullah Supervision

On January 28, 2022, the Saudi-funded Al-Arabiya TV channel aired the first episode of a documentary titled "Al-Qaeda's Faces in Iran," which suggested that a secret meeting took place between Al-Qaeda's slain top leader, Osama Bin Laden, and slain Iranian General Qasem Soleimani.

 

 

Leader Of Al-Qaeda-Aligned Group In Gaza Accuses Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) Of Operating Secret Prisons, Calls HTS Leader Al-Joulani "Mentally Ill"

On January 31- February 2, 2022, the leader of an Al-Qaeda-aligned Gaza-based jihadi published a series of posts on his Telegram and Twitter accounts lashing out at the Syrian jihadi group Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) and its leader, Abu Muhammad Al-Joulani, accusing them of operating secret prisons where detainees are mistreated.

 

Al-Shabab Media Wing Releases Part 16 Of Recruitment Video Series Featuring Swahili-Speaking Fighter Urging Muslims To Come To Somalia

On January 24, 2022, the media arm of the Somalia-based Al-Qaeda affiliate Harakat Al-Shabab Al-Mujahideen (Al-Shabab), released part 16 of a series of recruitment videos featuring a Swahili-speaking fighter urging Muslims who live in the "abode of unbelief" to make hijra to Somalia.

 

New Effort Endorsed By Pro-Al-Qaeda Telegram Channels Seeks To Promote Lectures On YouTube By Jihadi Clerics

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

On January 28, 2022, a new Telegram channel called "YouTuber Salafi" published a post noting that YouTube is "one of the largest sites containing [video] clips of various scholars, and even of various domains and religions," and adding that YouTube content which receives a large number of likes, comments, and views is promoted by the site's algorithms for new users, while other content can generally be found only by searching for it.

 

Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) Religious Official Calls On Syrian Factions To Exploit Russia-Ukraine Conflict To Advance In Syria

On January 27, 2022, an Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) religious official posted a message on his Telegram channel commenting on the escalating tension between Russia and Ukraine and the possibility that Moscow could invade Ukraine, as well as the implications of Russia's involvement in Syria.

 

French Jihadi Leader in Idlib Released After One Year in Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) Prison

On February 3, 2022, Syrian jihadi Telegram channels reported that the leader of a group of French jihadi fighters in the rebel-held Idlib area in Syria, was released from Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) prison after being incarcerated since August 2020.

 

Pro-HTS Video Reviews Major Battles Against Syrian Regime Between 2015-2016, Blames Other Factions For Loss Of Aleppo

On January 19, 2022, a YouTube user shared a video highlighting the large-scale battles that took place between the Syrian rebel and jihadi factions against Syrian regime forces and its allies over Idlib in March 2015, and Aleppo in 2016.

 

Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) Leader Launches 'Keeping You Warm Is Our Duty' Campaign, Promises To Aid 50 Thousand Families

On January 31, 2022, a pro-Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) Telegram user published a pictorial report documenting the launch of a campaign lead by the HTS leader promising to assist 50 thousand "affected" families.

 

After Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) Was Criticized For Philosophy Curriculum In Idlib, Egyptian-Born HTS Religious Official Issues Fatwa Against Studying Philosophy

On January 30, 2022, an Egyptian-born senior religious official in Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) posted a fatwa on Telegram responding to the question: "Studying philosophy, along with the unbelief that it contains: Is it permitted?"

 

U.S.-Born Jihadi Reporter Releases Video Simulating Torture Technique Allegedly Used By Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS), Demands Group Sign "Prisoner's Covenant" Granting Detainee Rights

On January 31, 2022, On the Ground News (OGN), a pro-jihad media outlet run from northern Syria by U.S.-born journalist Bilal Abdul Kareem, posted a 58-second video clip on YouTube. In the clip, which features Abdul Kareem speaking in English and is subtitled in Arabic, the U.S.-born journalist has his hands tied to a metal pole, simulating a torture technique which he claims is used in the prisons of Syrian jihadi group Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS).

 

Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) Tunisian Religious Official: The Muslim Brotherhood 'Destroyed Countries, Wasted Opportunities' Because They Practice Politics With A Preaching Mentality

On February 1, 2022, the Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) religious official and Tunisian national 'Abd Al-Rahman Al-Idrisi published a post on Telegram condemning the Muslim Brotherhood organization and claiming that they "practice politics with a preaching mentality," which is why they have "destroyed countries and missed [many] opportunities."

 

Iraqi Shi'ite Militia Magazine Reports Shi'ite Militia Force Surveilled U.S. Embassy Compound In Baghdad, 'Acquired Desired Intelligence'

On February 1, 2022, the Zulfiqar Forces, a Shi'ite Iraqi militia, released the sixth issue of a magazine that includes a short report about a Shi'ite militia intelligence unit penetrating the U.S. Embassy compound in Baghdad. The report in the magazine is based on a 49-second video clip shared by the Zulfiqar Forces on its Telegram channel, on January 10, 2022.

 

UN, Iraqi Government Condemn Rocket Attacks On Baghdad International Airport; Media Outlet Affiliated With Iran-Backed Militias: Attack Targeted U.S. Military Base, Decommissioned Airplane

On January 28, 2022, a Telegram channel affiliated with Iran-backed militias in Iraq, reported that six rockets were fired at a military base housing U.S. forces near Baghdad International Airport.

 

Pro-Iran Militia Claims Drone Attack On 'Vital Facilities' In Abu Dhabi, Threatens More Attacks 'Until UAE Stops Interfering' In Yemen And Iraq

On February 2, 2022, an Iraqi Shi'ite group released a statement claiming responsibility for an attack on "vital facilities" in the capital city of the United Arab Emirate (UAE), Abu Dhabi, using four drones. Claiming that the attacks took place today, the statement threatened more painful attacks until the UAE stops "interfering in the affairs of the region's countries, particularly in Yemen and Iraq."

 

Iran-Backed Militia Leader Threatens To Retaliate Against Turkey For Continued Air Campaign In Northern Iraq

On February 2, 2022, Qais Al-Khazali, secretary-general of Asa'ib Ahl Al-Haq, an Iran-backed militia in Iraq, condemned Turkish military activity in northern Iraq and pledged to confront it.

 

Media Outlet Affiliated With Iran-Backed Militias Claims PMU Drone Shot Down By American F15 Aircraft In Northern Iraq

On January 28, 2022, a Telegram channel affiliated with Iran-backed militias in Iraq reported that an American-made military aircraft, type F-15E, has allegedly shot down a reconnaissance drone operated by the Iran-backed Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) near Speicher base in Tikrit city, Salahuddin province, in northern Iraq.

 

Saudi-Owned TV Channel: Hizbullah In Syria Adopts Russian Communications System; Evacuates Syrian Armed Forces Positions From Border Area With Lebanon

A Saudi-owned TV channel reported on January 25, 2022, that Hizbullah has redrawn the map of its intelligence positions on the Syria-Lebanon border, stating that the new plan was determined by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Intelligence Office, in coordination with a Hizbullah intelligence unit.

 

Hizbullah Brigades: We Donated A Billion Iraqi Dinars To The Fundraising Campaign For Weapons And Drones For The Houthis In Yemen

On January 24, 2022, following the latest wave of escalation in the fighting between the Houthis and the UAE and Saudi Arabia, supporters of the Shi'ite militias in Iraq announced the launch of a fundraising campaign whose aim was to buy "weapons, equipment and drones," for the Houthi Ansar Allah movement in Yemen.

 

Houthi Ansar Allah Movement in Yemen Claims Responsibility For Third Attack This Month On UAE; Warns Locals And Foreigners To Stay Away From Likely Targets

On January 31, 2022, the military spokesman for the Houthi Ansar Allah Movement released a statement on Twitter from the Houthi Armed Forces in which it claims responsibility for an integrated attack comprising drones and ballistic missiles on "important, sensitive, and qualitative targets" in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, on the same day.

 

Houthis Release Music Video Shot On UAE Ship Captured On January 3, 2022

On February 1, 2022, the military media arm of Yemen's Houthis, a.k.a. the Ansar Allah movement, released a music video showing the militia's band on the deck of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) ship named the Rawabee, which the Houthis captured on January 3, 2022.

 

During Week Ending January 23, 2022, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Killed Police Officer In Islamabad, Carried Out Multiple Attacks In Peshawar And Tribal Region

This report will review details of attacks claimed by Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (the Movement of Pakistani Taliban, TTP) during the week ending January 23, 2022.

 

Afghan Taliban Mujahideen Graduate From Training Courses, Hundreds 'Trained In High Islamic And Afghan Spirit' Inducted As Part Of Interior Ministry

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the Taliban jihadi organization that took over the country on August 15, 2021) has been training its jihadi fighters and inducting them into the Afghan military and domestic security services under the Afghan interior ministry. Recently, hundreds of such trained mujahideen were inducted into the domestic and border security forces in the provinces of Takhar and Khost.

 

In Meeting With Afghan Taliban Interior Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani, Who Is On FBI's Most Wanted List, Turkish Ambassador Assures Taliban: 'Turkey Will Never Allow Any [Opposition] Movement To Operate From Its Soil Against The Islamic Emirate'

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

In a meeting with the Afghan Taliban's acting Interior Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani, the jihadi commander on FBI's list of most wanted persons, Cihad Erginay, Turkey's Ambassador to Afghanistan, assured the Taliban leadership that "Turkey will not allow anyone to operate on its soil against the Islamic Emirate [the Taliban jihadi organization which seized power on August 15, 2021]."

 

Afghan Taliban Writer Inayatullah Khamosh Castigates Free Speech, Says: 'With The Western Invasion Of Afghanistan And The Establishment Of A Puppet [Democratic] Regime Here, Fraudulent Freedom Of Speech Also Came'

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

An article published on one of the official websites of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the Taliban jihadi organization that seized power on August 15, 2021) pours scorn on free speech and blames it for bringing Western values and obscenities into Afghan society.

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