Abu Muhammad al Julani, the head of al Qaeda’s Al Nusrah Front in Syria, addresses Russia’s intervention in an audio message. Julani calls for reprisal attacks against Russians and says the jihadists must strike Shiite villages in order to extract concessions from Bashar al Assad’s regime.
The Taliban admitted earlier today that its forces have withdrawn from the center of Kunduz city. The group still controls all of the surrounding districts, however, meaning the city center is still under threat. While the Taliban portrayed its decision to withdraw as being somewhat altruistic, Amnesty International has accused the group of committing various crimes during its multi-day siege.
The Philippines-based jihadist group is notorious for taking Western hostages in southeast Asia.
The US military’s raid on two large al Qaeda camps in the Shorabak district of the Kandahar province highlights al Qaeda’s significant footprint in Afghanistan more than 14 years after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
While Tunisia has made claims the Uqba bin Nafi battalion has been defeated, the al Qaeda group remains a threat to the country’s security.
The Taliban control or contest a belt of districts in the south spanning from Farah to Helmand, Uruzgan, and now Kandahar, and may use this to threaten Lashkar Gah, the provincial capital of Helmand, or Kandahar city.
The video showing an attack on Nigerian troops in Borno state was released as the jihadist group killed over 30 in suicide attacks in neighboring Chad.
The Iraqi military claimed it targeted Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, the emir of the Islamic State, as he was traveling to meet with other commanders of his organization at a location on the border with Syria. The fate of Baghdadi, who has been reported killed or wounded several times in the past, is unknown.
The Free Syrian Army’s Southern Front, Al Nusrah Front and Ahrar al Sham all claimed to have captured the so-called UN Hill from the Assad regime earlier today. The Southern Front previously rejected collaboration with Al Nusrah Front.
The Islamic State has issued a statement claiming to have captured several key towns north of the city of Aleppo. The group’s campaign in Aleppo province had stalled until Russia began targeting some of its opposition, including Free Syrian Army units.
Brigadier General Hossein Hamedani is the third senior Iraqi military adviser who has been killed in the Syrian-Iraqi theater since the beginning of the year.
The Taliban said it seized control of the districts of Garziwan and Pashtun Kot in Faryab. The fall of the two districts took place just one week after the Taliban attempted to seize control of Maimana, the provincial capital.
Despite being pushed out of its major urban strongholds, the al Qaeda branch continues to be a potent threat inside Somalia.
The Islamic State’s “Aden-Abyan Province” claimed responsibility for four suicide bombings in Aden earlier today. The attackers targeted forces from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, in addition to Yemeni soldiers. The operations were a departure for the Islamic State, which has usually targeted civilian facilities in Yemen.
The designations include three jihadists from the Russian Caucasus, including Omar al Shishani’s deputy and a Turkey-based “overseas emissary.” A recruiter from the United Kingdom was also designated.
Qari Fasihuddin, the “Jihadi-in charge” of Badakhshan, is the second shadow governor to deny reports that he was killed in a US airstrike since the Taliban took control of Kunduz and several districts in the Afghan north.
Based on an analysis by The Long War Journal, 29 of Afghanistan’s 398 districts are under Taliban control, and another 36 districts are contested. An interactive map details the locations.
The ranks of the Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda’s official branch in Syria, continue to swell with foreign fighters.
The Islamic Jihad Union’s supporters have released dozens of images from the city of Kunduz. The photos document the group’s participation in the siege of the city. In the months leading up to the invasion, the IJU and its allies captured territory in the surrounding areas.
Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda’s official branch in Syria, has posted several photos purportedly showing Russia’s airstrikes. Al Nusrah also posted two images of leaflets dropped by the Assad regime.
The Islamic State West Africa has routinely used women and girls to execute suicide attacks in the region. The group has deployed at least 52 female suicide bombers since June 2014. It is likely some of these women and girls were kidnapped and indoctrinated to conduct attacks.
Ahrar al Sham claims to have launched Grad rockets at the Hmeimim airbase in the Latakia province of Syria earlier today. Russian forces are stationed at the airbase.
Wardoj and Baharak are the latest districst to fall to the Taliban since the provincial capital of Kunduz was overrun on Sept. 28. The Taliban has seized control of 10 districts in five provinces.
Mullah Abdul Salam, the Taliban’s shadow governor for the embattled Afghan province of Kunduz, denied NDS reports that he was killed in a US airstrike. Salam is directing the fighting in Kunduz. Afghan soldiers are reported to have retaken the center of the city of Kunduz city and are battling the Taliban in several neighborhoods.