State linked Hizb-i-Islami Gulbuddin explosive experts Abdullah Nowbahar and Abdul Saboor to a suicide attack that was carried out by a young woman that killed 12 people in Kabul. Additionally, Saboor has been linked to a suicide attack that killed six Americans.
The head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights told AFP that Shishani “was seriously injured” and taken to a hospital in Raqqah province, where he was treated by a European doctor.
The small North Caucasian group does not play a significant role in the fighting, however, its inclusion is still important as it provides extra manpower to al Qaeda and its other allies against the regime and Kurdish forces.
The involvement of US special operations forces in the Awdigle raid and the heavy resistance put up by Shabaab indicates that the objective was to capture a high value target.
Over the past year, the Taliban have seized control of, or contested, a number of districts in a belt that spans southwestern Herat, eastern Farah, northern and central Helmand, Uruzgan, and northwestern Kandahar. The Taliban have historically used these safe havens to organize operations against neighboring districts and provincial capitals.
The US military claimed it targeted and possibly killed Omar al Shishani, a capable field commander for the Islamic State, in an airstrike in Shadaddi. Shishani’s death has not been confirmed.
According to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, 204 former Guantanamo detainees are confirmed or suspected of reengaging in terrorist or insurgent “activities.” The number of ex-detainees on the US government’s recidivist list has steadily grown since an estimate was first made public in June 2008.
The creation of the Chief of Staff Committee is one way al Qaeda has ensured that it can adapt to US counterterrorism operations designed to kill key leaders and operatives.
More than 150 Shabaab fighters are said to have been killed in a strike on a Shabaab camp north of the capital of Mogadishu.
While the Islamic State gets most of the attention for its training of children, several other jihadist groups in Syria, many of which foreign al Qaeda groups, also do the same.
Al Qaeda groups operating in Mali continue to be a threat to both local and regional security.
‘Amaq News Agency, which is linked to the Islamic State’s online propaganda operations, released an infographic claiming that the “caliphate” launched 90 “martyrdom operations” in Iraq, Syria and Libya in February. The propaganda outfit previously claimed that the Islamic State carried out 85 suicide attacks in Iraq and Syria in January. These figures have not been independently verified.
Al Ather “news” agency, which publishes propaganda for Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and its front, Ansar al Sharia, has released a series of photos showing a large rally in the city of Mukallah. AQAP captured Mukallah in early April 2015.
It is unclear if the US or Russia killed Amr al Absi, the Islamic State’s governor for the Syrian province of Aleppo. The US launched an airstrike in northern Syria on March 3, where Absi is said to have been killed.
Iranian-backed Shia militias in Iraq continue to showcase both the ownership and usage of US-made vehicles and equipment.
A letter recovered in Osama bin Laden’s compound reveals that Boko Haram’s leader, Abubakar Shekau, sought direct contact with al Qaeda’s deputy leader at the time. There is abundant evidence that Boko Haram was supported by al Qaeda’s international network until Shekau swore allegiance to the Islamic State’s Abu Bakr al Baghdadi in 2015.
Newly released documents from Osama bin Laden’s compound reveal that al Qaeda was skeptical about statements issued in Mullah Omar’s name. As of early 2010, bin Laden apparently was not communicating regularly with Omar. Letters from later that same year show, however, that bin Laden likely did begin corresponding with Omar. Bin Laden argued in one letter that the West had been weakened by the war in Afghanistan and the mujahideen simply needed to be patient.
A letter to Atiyah by “Ahmad,” who likely is Ustad Ahmad Farooq, shows how al Qaeda attempts to manipulate the media. Also, al Qaeda in Pakistan based its media operations from Wana, South Waziristan, which is home to a Taliban group supported by the Pakistani state.
According to a letter in Osama bin Laden’s files, a US drone strike that killed Abu Laith in 2008 also killed a Libyan and 10 other “Arabs, Tajiks, and Turkistanis.”
In a letter written sometime in 2010 to al Qaeda’s leadership, AQAP emir Nasir al Wuhayshi detailed the areas in Yemen where the group had significant influence. AQAP took control of many of these areas in a 2011 offensive.
Newly released files recovered in Osama bin Laden’s compound reveal that al Qaeda’s leadership drafted a truce proposal for the Mauritanian government. There is no evidence in the files that Mauritania agreed to the deal, which would have allowed al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) to operate freely in the country. In a separate letter, AQIM emir Abdelmalek Droukdel asked for bin Laden’s advice concerning the staffing of his elite Shura council.
Just months prior to his death, Osama bin Laden ordered his right hand man to relocate the al Qaeda “brothers” out of North and South Waziristan. The al Qaeda men were to be moved to Afghanistan and other areas in Pakistan.
The raids targeted AQIM field commander Abu al Nour al Andalusi, a Spanish national, and the Saudi spokesman for Al Murabitoon, Abu Dujana al Qasimi. Neither the French nor AQIM have commented on the raids, which are said to have occurred in recent days.