The Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP) in Afghanistan and Syria has long operated as part of the Taliban-al Qaeda axis. Earlier this year, however, the TIP’s Syrian branch sided with Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) during its battles with other rebel groups. This infighting and related events have complicated the picture with respect to the TIP in Syria. One TIP-affiliated outlet claimed earlier this year that the group’s senior management had sent new leadership from Afghanistan to Syria.
Since late April, Shabaab has released a series of videos emphasizing its place in al Qaeda’s global network. Two of the videos were recorded by the group’s emir, Abu Ubaydah Ahmad Umar, a normally reclusive figure. Abu Ubaydah refers to the Taliban’s emir as the “Commander of the Faithful” and Ayman al Zawahiri as the “father-emir” while addressing the mujahideen in Syria and Yemen.
Shabaab, al Qaeda’s branch in Somalia, released a nearly hour-long video celebrating al Qaeda’s legacy and promoting its war as part of the global jihad. The group also advertised its “Mohamed Atta Training Camp for Martyrdom Seekers.”
A former Guantanamo detainee known as Jamal al Harith (formerly Ronald Fiddler) launched a suicide attack with a vehicle borne improvised explosive device (VBIED) south of Mosul earlier this week. He is at least the second former Guantanamo detainee to launch a suicide attack in or around Mosul on behalf of the Islamic State and its predecessor organization.
Ayman al Zawahiri eulogizes two slain al Qaeda veterans in a newly released video. Zawahiri praises the pair for their contributions to jihad. The production is laced with criticisms of Abu Bakr al Baghdadi’s Islamic State.
Al Qaeda has released a new audio message from Hamza bin Laden, Osama’s son and heir. The message was translated by the SITE Intelligence Group. Hamza argues that the number of “mujahideen” has grown dramatically around the globe despite the decade and a half of war that began on Sept. 11, 2001. Hamza also threatens revenge for his father’s death.
AQAP has published a two-part interview with Nasir al Wuhayshi, who was killed in a US drone strike in June 2015. The interview is a transcript of Wuhayshi’s account of the 9/11 plot. Wuhayshi was Osama bin Laden’s aide-de-camp prior to the hijackings.