Eleven Taliban leaders have been reportedly exchanged for three kidnapped Indian engineers. One of the newly-freed Taliban commanders is Abdul Rashid Baluch. The US designated Baluch as a terrorist in 2015, reporting that he “served as a Taliban liaison officer to al Qaeda (AQ) and was responsible for planning meetings between Taliban senior leadership” and al Qaeda “members in Karachi, Pakistan.”
Afghan officials have identified several AQIS members who were killed during a controversial raid in Musa Qala, Helmand earlier this week. They have also posted images purportedly documenting the weaponry, explosives and cash seized at the jihadists’ compound.
On Sept. 19, Thomas Joscelyn testified before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs at a hearing titled, “The Trump Administration’s Afghanistan Policy.” His testimony focused on the close working relationship between the Taliban and Al-Qaeda.
U.S. and Afghan officials say they targeted al Qaeda members in Musa Qala, a Taliban-controlled district in the southern Helmand province. Reports indicate that dozens of civilians perished during the clash that ensued.
In a newly-released audio message, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi boasts that his Islamic State has conducted “unified raids” across the globe this year. Many of these operations were conducted by the Islamic State’s wilayat, or provinces,
On Sept. 14, President Trump released a statement saying Hamza bin Laden was killed in an American “counterterrorism operation.” However, key questions concerning Hamza’s life and death remain unanswered.
The U.S. State Department has offered rewards of up to $5 million each for information concerning three al Qaeda leaders in Syria. All three have been involved in the heated disagreements over jihadi strategy and leadership in the Levant.
On the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 hijackings, Ayman al-Zawahiri defends the attack. He claims in a new video that all of the Islamic scholars’ arguments against the hijackings have been “refuted.” The video also features various al-Qaeda leaders from around the globe.