The US government has designated Myrna Mabanza, an Islamic State facilitator based in the Philippines, as a terrorist. The Treasury Department identifies Mabanza as a woman in her mid-20s who has worked with some of the Islamic State’s most senior personnel in Southeast Asia and has also served as an “intermediary” to jihadists in Syria.
Two suicide bombers killed dozens inside the Afghan capital today. The first targeted a checkpoint near an Afghan intelligence building, while the second struck journalists and others who rushed to the scene. Reporters Without Borders says it “was the deadliest attack on the media since the fall of the Taliban regime in 2001.”
The group said that four suicide bombers, rather than the previously reported two or three, were used in the April 14 suicide assault on the Timbuktu airport. Additionally, JNIM also denied claims of the use of female suicide bombers.
Several groups within the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps network have eulogized Saleh al Sammad, the political leader of Yemen’s Houthis.
US officials should stop debasing themselves by issuing facile calls for peace. The Taliban has no intention of joining a political process and as it has stated numerous times, its goals are the expulsion of US and foreign forces, the overthrow of the Afghan government, the re-establishment of the of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan and the imposition of its harsh brand of Sharia.
US forces in Afghanistan would be the primary target of Al Khandaq Jihadi operations, while Afghan government and security forces would be secondary, according to the Taliban statement.
The video highlights the worsening security situation in the Afghan north, including Baghlan, where 12 of the province’s 14 districts are contested and one is controlled by the Taliban.
In a lengthy audio message released on Apr. 22, Islamic State spokesman Abu-al-Hasan al-Muhajir claims that the US is retreating from Iraq and Syria. He argues that his group is in a better condition than when the US withdrew its forces from Iraq in 2011. He advises the Islamic State’s members that they should prepare for the war against the Russians and Iranians, who are filling the void left by the Americans.
The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing at a voter registration office in Kabul, Afghanistan earlier today. It is the latest in a string of attacks carried out by the group inside the Afghan capital. More than 50 people were killed and over 100 others wounded, according to initial casualty reports.
JNIM claims the brazen assault was in retaliation for the death of several of its commanders and fighters in recent French raids.
The Taliban currently controls seven of Helmand’s 13 districts and contests the other six, according to date compiled by LWJ.
The closure of the schools highlights the Taliban’s grip on the province, where all of the districts are currently contested.
Today’s claims of responsibility are the first for the group in Burkina Faso since 2016.
The military has not produced detailed press releases for any strikes this year, continuing 2017’s limited transparency.
The Islamic State’s propagandists continue to take aim at rival jihadists, including al Qaeda and Hay’at Tahrir al Sham (HTS). A recent Islamic State video calls upon HTS fighters to defect to the so-called caliphate’s cause.
A Syrian militia led by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) declared on April 6 jihad against US and allied forces in Syria. The IRGC is likely to boost its military support to the group as it explores avenues to drive the US out of Syria.
In the past six months, US forces have thrice interdicted Shabaab car bombs and prevented imminent attacks against civilians in the Somalia capital, Mogadishu.
The Afghanistan watchdog was finally able to release the military’s own district-level assessment, allowing for a direct comparison with our data. The Taliban currently controls 37 districts, contests 200, and claims to control two more.
The district of Khwaja Omari was previously considered to be one of the more secure areas in Ghazni, which is a hotbed for the Taliban and other foreign jihadist groups such as al Qaeda.
The IJU is the second foreign jihadist group to highlight joint battlefield operations with the Afghan Taliban in recent weeks.
Earlier today, Israel struck the T-4 military air base in Syria’s Homs Governorate. At least four Iranians including a Colonel died in the attack.
Hikmatullah is part of the contingent of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan that defected and joined the Islamic State after the Taliban was caught hiding the death of Mullah Omar.
The US-led coalition said in a statement that “much work remains to defeat” Abu Bakr al Baghdadi’s organization in Iraq and Syria. The statement is at odds with the White House’s view that ISIS has been “almost completely destroyed.”
The United States attacked al Qaeda’s branch in Somalia in the southern town of Jilib, a recurring strike location and known Shabaab safe haven.
The White House declared on Apr. 4 that the “military mission to eradicate ISIS in Syria is coming to a rapid end, with ISIS being almost completely destroyed.” But ISIS continues to operate in several areas of Syria, as well as in Iraq, which wasn’t even mentioned in the White House’s statement.
French special forces took part in a large-scale joint operation with Malian and Nigerien troops, alongside Tuareg militias, against militants of the so-called Islamic State in the Greater Sahara on April 1.
Sunday’s clashes between the Tuarag alliance and Islamic State-loyal militants in northern Mali is the first since early last month.
Indian security forces launched a decisive counter-terror operation yesterday in the Kashmiri districts of Shopian and Anantnag resulting in the deaths of at least 13 terrorists, three Indian security forces, and four civilians.
The designations are the latest in a series of moves by the Trump administration to pressure Pakistan to tackle terrorist groups that openly operate inside the country with the approval and support of both the military and government.
The location of last weekend’s strike highlights the geographical range of US operations against Shabaab, and the scope of the al Qaeda branch’s insurgency.