Islamic State video congratulates Sinai ‘province’ for downing Russian airliner

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The Islamic State’s Aleppo “province” has released a video congratulating its brothers in the Sinai “province” for downing a Russian airliner on October 31. The video doesn’t prove that the Islamic State was responsible, but Western officials say it is increasingly likely that the jihadists placed a bomb on board the jet.

In the new video, the Islamic State says the plane was brought down in retaliation for Russia’s bombing campaign in Syria. The video features a number of people who discuss the alleged effects of Russia’s attacks. The Islamic State threatens that Russia will be defeated in Syria just as the Soviet Union was in Afghanistan.

The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the Russian airliner crash on at least three previous occasions.

Within hours of the crash, the Sinai “province” issued a statement saying that “[s]oldiers of the caliphate were able to down a Russian airplane.” The Islamic State’s Al Bayan radio later released an audio version of the statement. On November 4, the Islamic State again said it was responsible, defiantly arguing in an audio message that it doesn’t have to prove how it destroyed the airliner. The group added, however, that it would release evidence to support its claim at some point in the future. The new video does not include such evidence.

The Islamic State has disseminated its previous claims of responsibility in multiple languages.

Below are a number of screenshots from the video.

The video shows Russian President Vladimir Putin meeting with Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad and Iranian president Hassan Rouhani:

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The Islamic State portrays the US as being allied with Russia when it comes to Syria:

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The video commemorates the Sinai “province’s” pledge of allegiance to Abu Bakr al Baghdadi in November 2014:

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Images of aircraft owned by Metrojet, which operated the downed Russian airliner, are shown:

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The video reenacts the downing of the aircraft in the Sinai:

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One of the Islamic State’s “witnesses,” who discusses the impact of Russia’s bombing campaign in Syria:

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Thomas Joscelyn is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Senior Editor for The Long War Journal.

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  • Stephanie says:

    Pretty disturbing that ISIS is now operating out of their “confined area” of Iraq and Syria and becoming an international threat.

    • Arjuna says:

      They said it was coming. In a perverse way these terrorists are like Americans. They announce what they’re going to do in advance.

      Best one I heard was the idea of digging a moat around the entire Sharm airport and filling it with crocodiles, ’cause you can’t bribe a crocodile. Terrorism is opportunistic and parasitic. It is going to plague these weak and broken societies for decades, if not centuries now that it’s so fully out of the bottle and transnational.

  • Daud Johari says:

    I am looking forward to receiving your analytical reports/ comments/ articles on main events happening in the Middle East & North Africa (MENA) region esp in Syria, Yemen, Libya, Iraq & Egypt continously. Appreciation & Regards.

  • Dennis says:

    Russia. ..welcome to our nightmare. .we know your gonna enjoy yourself. ..let’s see how long it takes for your popular support to crumble under heavy combat deaths..

    • Bill Baar says:

      I think you’ve forgotten the Beslan School massacre Dennis. Russia no stranger to terror attacks.

      • Arjuna says:

        Beslan, Moscow theater, Moscow Metro, Moscow apartment building, Moscow outdoor concert, two planes (white widows)… now a third plane. Russians know the crazies. Putin will go large. One blog post says he’s moving his tac nukes closer to the fun. Sorry, gallows humor.


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