May 25, 2023 Special Announcements No. 1350

Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) Weekly: May 20-27, 2023

May 25, 2023
Special Announcements No. 1350

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 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 Please include your name, title, and organization in your email.


EXCLUSIVE: Jihadi Groups Around The World Continue To Fundraise In Cryptocurrency For Their Activity – Part II: January 2020-May 2023

Since the MEMRI Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) published its seminal report The Coming Storm – Terrorists Using Cryptocurrency on August 21, 2019, the JTTM research team has continued to monitor jihadi use of cryptocurrency along with MEMRI's Cyber & Jihad Lab (CJL), which focuses on jihadi use of emerging technologies such as encryption, artificial intelligence, drones, bots, and cryptocurrency. Since its inception 15 years ago, it has worked with legislatures and tech companies to develop strategies to counter terrorists' use of such technologies.

These groups have most recently been using cryptocurrencies in a range of ways: Pro-ISIS websites are raising funds using cryptocurrency and have published English-Arabic dictionaries of cryptocurrency terms; Pro-Al-Qaeda groups in Syria and jihadi groups in Gaza have raised cryptocurrency to fund military action; Russian-speaking pro-jihadi groups have called for donations using cryptocurrencies; Iran-backed militias in Iraq have promoted a website that purports to sell U.S. and NATO weapons using cryptocurrency.


EXCLUSIVE: On ISIS Encrypted Server, User Calls On Supporters To Send Letters To Jailed Pakistani Neuroscientist Linked To Al-Qaeda Aafia Siddiqui; Claims Her Sister Will Visit Her Soon

On May 21, 2023, a user of the ISIS-operated Rocket.Chat server published a post saying that Dr. Aafia Siddiqui, the Al-Qaeda-linked Pakistani neuroscientist incarcerated in the U.S. for attempting to kill a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan, has been granted a visitation by her sister for the first time in 20 years.


EXCLUSIVE: Article In Issue 25 Of ISKP Magazine 'Voice Of Khurasan' Criticizes Western Icons Like Harry Styles And Elon Musk: 'It Is Absolutely Disgusting That Even In Muslim Countries People Are Following, Celebrating And Welcoming Kufr [Unbelief] Celebrities Like Harry Styles, Jaden Smith, BTS, Elon Musk, And Brad Pitt'

An article in the latest issue of "Voice of Khurasan,"  an English-language monthly magazine published by Al-Azaim Media Foundation, a media outlet linked to the Islamic State Khorasan Province (ISKP), which defines itself as a supporting entity for ISIS, criticizes Western icons like Harry Styles, Jaden Smith, BTS, Elon Musk, and Brad Pitt, accusing the mainstream media of glorifying "unrighteous behavior" for men who are not, in the magazine's opinion, masculine.


EXCLUSIVE: New Telegram Channel Affiliated With Iran-Backed Militias In Iraq Threatens U.S., British Forces In Iraq, Warns Iraqis Not To Collaborate With Them, Threatens U.S. Embassy

On May 16, 2023, a new Telegram channel which supports Ashab Al-Kahf, an Iran-backed Iraqi Shi'ite group, began to post messages which threaten the American and British forces active in Iraq. The messages also warn the Iraqi people not to collaborate with these forces and echo previous threats against the U.S. Embassy in the country.


EXCLUSIVE: Al-Qaeda Affiliate Al-Shabab Media Outlet Critiques Somali President's Speech At Arab League 'Summit Of Shame,' Condemns Him For Welcoming Syrian President Assad, Rejects His Claim Of Securing Mogadishu

On May 17, 2023, following the 32nd Arab League Summit held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, the Shahada News Agency, the official media outlet of Al-Qaeda affiliate Al-Shabab, reported on the event and translated the Somali-language speech of the Somali president, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, into Arabic.


Pro-ISIS Outlet Attributes 'Secular' Turkey's Arrest Of 12 'Takva Group' Operatives To Country's 'War On Sunnis' In Attempt To Boost 'War On Terror Statistics'

On May 24, 2023, Turkish media reported that the Intelligence and Counterterrorism Branches of the Istanbul Security Directorate had arrested 12 suspected members of the reportedly Islamic State (ISIS)-affiliated "Takva Group" in simultaneous raids in the Turkish provinces of Istanbul, Konya, and Antalya. ISIS supporters reacted online.


ISIS Weekly Editorial Claims Shari'a Law Is Best, Easiest Form Of Government; Waging Jihad To Implement Shari'a Is 'Absolute Justice'

On May 18, 2023, ISIS released Issue 391 of its weekly Al-Naba' newsletter, which includes an editorial praising shari'a law as the best and easiest form of legislation for humankind, and criticizing manmade laws for spreading immorality and attempting to steer Muslims away from Islam.


ISIS Weekly Publishes Eulogy Of Afghan ISIS Commander Who Fought Soviets, Americans, Taliban

On May 18, 2023, ISIS released issue 391 of its weekly Al-Naba' newsletter, which included the eulogy of a "martyred" ISKP (Islamic State Khurasan Province) commander.


ISIS Releases Photo Set Documenting Takeover Of Village From Al-Qaeda's Affiliate In The Sahel GSIM

On May 17, ISIS published a photoset showing ISIS fighters taking  strongholds belonging to an "apostate Al-Qaeda militia" (belonging to Al-Qaeda's affiliate in the Sahel, the Group for the Support of Islam and Muslims - GSIM), in north-eastern Mali.


Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) Claims Latest In String Of Suicide Attacks In Nigeria's Borno State

On May 17, 2023, the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) claimed that a day earlier, its fighters conducted a suicide attack against Nigerian forces amid sustained fighting around Algarno forest in northern Borno state.


Islamic State Central Africa Province (ISCAP) Claims Deaths Of Dozens Of Christians In Attacks In Northeast DRC

Between May 20 and 22, 2023, Islamic State Central African Province (ISCAP) claimed responsibility for a series of attacks against Christians carried out by its operatives over the preceding week in the provinces of Ituri and North Kivu, which are located in the northeast of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).


Prominent ISIS Supporter Publishes Article Claiming Western Media Keep ISIS Supporters From Spreading 'Truth', Put 'Psychological Pressure' On Muslims

On May 23, 2023, ta pro-ISIS outlet posted an article by a prominent female ISIS supporter, a writer and poet.


Pro-ISIS Tech Outlet Claims Muslim, Arab Hackers Conducted Coordinated Cyber-Attacks On Israeli Websites, Infrastructure Systems In Response To Escalation In Gaza Strip

On ISIS-run Rocket.Chat server, members of an outlet dedicated to providing ISIS supporters with material about information, communication, and cyber security, announced a state of "general mobilization" among Arab and Muslim hackers to carry out cyber-attacks targeting Israeli basic infrastructure systems in response to Israel's continuing bombardment of the Gaza Strip.


Pro-ISIS Tech Outlet Warns Supporters That Encrypted Messaging Platform, Session, May Be Monitored By Intelligence Elements

On May 22, 2023, a pro-ISIS media outlet that shares information security tips and is on the pro-ISIS Rocket.Chat server, shared a link to an article discussing the security features of the Session messaging app, in which it warns ISIS supporters against using it, due to suspicion that the traffic on the app is monitored by intelligence and security elements.


Channel On ISIS Encrypted Server Announces Launch Of Cyber Op Targeting Israel, Names Participating Hacking Teams

On May 18, 2023, the moderator of a channel dedicated to cybersecurity on an ISIS-operated Rocket.Chat server published a post in Arabic and English calling on supporters to launch cyberattacks on Israeli targets.


Users Of ISIS-Operated Rocket.Chat Server Blast Pro-ISIS Media Group For Endorsing Education In Un-Islamic Schools, Warn Against Promotion Of LGBT, Fornication, Apostasy

A controversy has erupted among users of a Rocket.Chat server operated by ISIS supporters, after a pro-ISIS outlet released a series of posters, based on official ISIS media, encouraging Muslims to get an education even in "schools of tyranny" during the current period when ISIS lacks "empowerment." Several supporters were outraged by the group's implied advocation of attending schools run by non-Muslims, claiming that such institutions seek to indoctrinate Muslims to abandon their religion.


ISIS Supporter Warns Muslims Residing In Non-Muslim Countries Against Working For Jews And Christians, Encourages Them To Carry Out Lone Wolf Attacks

On May 3, 2023, an ISIS supporter on Telegram published a post calling on Muslims living in non-Muslim countries not to work for Christians or Jews, explaining that working for them is akin to empowering infidels against Islam. He further called on them to carry out lone wolf attacks.


Al-Qaeda In The Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) Claims Drone Attack On UAE-Backed Forces

On May 18, 2023, the Al-Malahem Media Foundation, the official media outlet of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), released a statement claiming responsibility for a drone attack against a military outpost belonging to the "mercenaries of the [United Arab] Emirates," – the Shabwah Defense force – in Shabwah Governorate, causing the forces to flee.


Al-Qaeda In The Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) Claims Drone And IED Attacks On High Ranking Yemeni Officer In Shabwah

On May 24, 2023, the Al-Malahem Media Foundation, the official media outlet of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), released a statement claiming responsibility for a drone attack targeting a staff army general in the Shabwah Defense force in Yemen's Shabwah Governorate.


Al-Qaeda Affiliate Al-Shabab Claims Over 921 Attacks Within Eight Months, In Which 2,506 Soldiers Were Killed And 2,842 Injured

On May 24, 2023, the Shahada News Agency, the media arm of Al-Qaeda affiliate Al-Shabab, released a report, in Arabic and English, summarizing Al-Shabab operations and their results during the past eight months, based on a statement delivered by the group's military spokesman.


Al-Qaeda Affiliate Al-Shabab Claims Attack Against Ugandan-Trained Somali Forces In Charge Of Security In Mogadishu, Killing Seven And Injuring Three

On May 22, 2023, Al-Qaeda Affiliate Al-Shabab's Shahada news agency claimed that a "security detachment" of Al-Shabab detonated an explosion in Mogadishu's Daynile district, targeting Somali forces who were recently trained in Uganda and in charge of security in the capital, Mogadishu.


Al-Qaeda's Somali Affiliate Al-Shabab Publishes Video Of Meeting Discussing Jihad In East Africa, Interview With Group's Emir, Statement Summarizing Conclusions

On May 21, 2023, the media arm of Al-Qaeda's affiliate in Somalia, Harakat al-Shabab al-Mujahideen (Al-Shabab) published a video in Somali detailing the outcome of the second session of Al-Shabab's consultative meeting held over eight days to discuss jihadi issues related to east Africa.


Al-Qaeda Affiliate GSIM Claims Raiding Malian Army Checkpoints, Landmine Attack Against Burkinabe Forces

The Group for the Support of Islam and Muslims (GSIM), Al-Qaeda's affiliate in the Sahel, released two statements claiming responsibility for five attacks targeting Burkinabe and Malian forces between May 16 and 19, 2023. The group also released photos documenting an assortment of equipment and weapons seized during the attacks.


Al-Qaeda-Aligned French Fighters In Syria Claim HTS 'Closed Doors To Jihad,' Normalized With 'Infidels'; Vow To Adhere To Jihad, 'Remain Faithful To Our Mission And Our Vision'

On May 22, 2023, the official media arms of Firqat Al-Ghuraba (FG) released an eight-minute video trailer announcing the upcoming release of the second installment of the video series "Refutations" to highlight jihadis' rejection of HTS treatment and systemic targeting of foreign jihadi groups in HTS-controlled territory.


Pro-Al-Qaeda Media Outlet Promotes YouTube Video By Jordanian Salafi Influencer Lambasting Concepts Of Gender, Sexual Identity

On May 17, 2023, a pro-Al-Qaeda outlet encouraged its supporters on the Chirpwire platform to watch and share a YouTube video recently released by a Jordanian Salafi influencer.


Yemen's Houthi Supreme Political Council Member Repeats Proposal To Saudi Arabia, UAE, To Freeze Military Activity In Yemen And Focus On Liberating Jerusalem; Promises To Supply Drones And Rockets

On May 16, 2023, Muhammad 'Ali Al-Houthi, a member of The Supreme Political Council of Yemen's Iran-backed Ansar Allah Movement (the Houthis), tweeted a post that had first been published May 15, 2021 on the Telegram channel of the Yemen Revolutionary Center in which he had proposed to UAE President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman that they suspend their military campaign in Yemen and focus on liberating Jerusalem.


Ashab Al-Kahf, An Iran-Backed Militia In Iraq, Claims Responsibility For IED Attack On U.S. Forces Six Years Ago

On May 18, 2023, an Iran-backed militia in Iraq, issued a claim of responsibility for a January 10, 2017 IED attack targeting a U.S. armored vehicle in Iraq's Salah Al-Din Governorate.


Syrian Opposition-Affiliated Website Reports About Arrival Of 750 Hizbullah Operatives To Syria For Training, Hizbullah's Plan To Expand Its Presence In Syria

On May 23, 2023, a Syrian opposition-affiliated news website published an article about the arrival of 750 Hizbullah operatives to Lattakia, Syria, to participate in military exercises. Combat courses have been taking place in the mountains of Lattakia province, including the Turkmen Mountains, in the north of the province.


Iran-Backed Telegram Channel Publishes Videos Of Lebanese Hizbullah Fighters During Military Exercise, Ceremony Of Handing Personal Rifle Of Slain Chief Commander To Hizbullah's Elite Unit

On May 22, 2023, the Telegram channel of the Iran-backed Iraqi militia Al-Nujaba Movement published a video showing what appeared to be Lebanese Hizbullah military training in southern Lebanon.


Following Hizbullah Military Drill In Southern Lebanon, Al-Qaeda-Aligned Lebanese Cleric Claims Group Behaving Like Arab Regimes Which Protect Israel, Enemy Of Sunnis Rather Than Israel

On May 21, 2023, Lebanese Hizbullah held a military drill in southern Lebanon as part of its celebrations of the 23rd anniversary of Resistance and Liberation Day, which marks the Israeli army's withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000. Many Hizbullah fighters participated in the drill, which simulated an attack on Israeli military bases and vehicles and involved the use of infantry tactics, explosives, motorcycles, ATVs, and small drones.


Local Reports: Prominent Idlib-Based Saudi Jihadi Cleric Relocates To Turkey After Dispute With Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS)

On May 22, 2023 a Lebanese Hizbullah-linked outlet reported that a Saudi-born independent jihadi cleric has left Idlib, which is controlled by Syrian jihadi group Hay'at Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS), and moved to Turkey.


Jihadi Group In Iran's Baluchestan Region Calls For Killing Of Former Police Commander Accused Of Rape, Offers Bounty

On May 19, 2023, the official outlet of Jaish Al-Adl, a Salafi jihadi group based in Iran's southeastern Sistan and Baluchestan Province, published a poster calling for the killing of a former police commander of Chabahar city, offering a bounty of one billion Iranian toman (about $23,450) to whoever kills him.


Review Of Twitter Account Of New Jihadi Group Tehreek-e-Jihad Pakistan (TJP), Which Warns Pakistani Army: 'Hundreds Of Mujahideen And Dozens Of Islam's Martyrdom-Seekers Are Ever Ready For Sacrifices With Money And Body'

In recent months, a new jihadi terror organization called Tehreek-e-Jihad Pakistan (TJP, the Jihadi Movement of Pakistan) has claimed several attacks in Pakistan's Baluchistan province.


Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Releases Images Of TTP Fighters Training: 'These Are Those Mujahideen Who Want… To Take Pakistan Toward Its Higher Objective (La Ilaha Illallah); They Are The Real Heirs Of This Land'

The media arm of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has published a set of images showing the TTP fighters who underwent a special training course on the use of "laser guns" and heavy weapons at Al-Farooq Training Center, whose location is not known.


Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Commander Sarbakaf Mohmand Rejects Reports Of Disagreements Among Its Ranks, Asks Pakistani Islamic Scholars: 'What Can Be The Singular Path Of Real Struggle For Islam Except Jihad For The Sake Of Allah?'

In two Urdu-language statements dated May 6 and May 15, 2023, the shadow governor of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) for Zhob in Baluchistan province and a commander of TTP's Jamaatul Ahrar (Omar Khalid Group) – has sought to dismiss media reports of factional differences within TTP and slammed Pakistan's leading Islamic religious scholar and leader of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) party Maulana Fazlur Rehman for not being loyal to Islam.

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