A “news” outfit affiliated with the Islamic State says the “caliphate” carried out 90 suicide attacks in Iraq, Syria and Libya during the month of February. The claim was made by ‘Amaq News Agency, which is linked to the Islamic State and often provides reliable information about the group’s international operations.
An infographic produced by ‘Amaq, and released via social media earlier today, summarizes the “martyrdom operations” for February. It can be seen below. 51 of the suicide attacks involved the use of vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices (VBIED) and the remaining 39 were executed using explosive belts.
‘Amaq previously released a similar summary for January (also seen below), claiming that 85 suicide operations were launched in Iraq and Syria. 47 of those used VBIEDs and the remaining 38 were launched by jihadists with suicide belts.
The Long War Journal has not independently verified these statistics, but the figures are plausible given the scale of the “caliphate’s” operations in these countries and prolific use of “martyrs.” However, the Islamic State is also known to exaggerate the impact of its operations and one should not assume that the infographics are completely accurate.
In addition, not all suicide operatives die willingly. Some are coerced to blow themselves up. Still, there is no doubt that the number of jihadists willing to die for the Islamic State’s cause has grown dramatically over the past few years.
‘Amaq News Agency infographic summarizing suicide operations in Iraq, Syria, and Libya in February:
‘Amaq News Agency infographic summarizing suicide operations in Iraq and Syria in January: