January 18, 2019
Notice to our readers: In observance of the upcoming Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, we will not be publishing on Monday and will return on Tuesday. Please enjoy the holiday.
Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jonathan R. Farmer Chief Cryptologic Technician Shannon M. Kent
Operations Support Specialist Scott Wirtz
Turkey will establish two new consulates, in Kirkuk and Najaf, & open new border crossing. [..]
10 Daesh operatives arrested in Mosul. [..]
Basra protesters set fire to police station. [..]
Erdogan will discuss “safe zone” concept with Putin. [..]
McGurk says Syria withdrawal decision may cause the re-emergence of Daesh. [..]
Anti-American demonstration in Baghdad undone by bad weather. [..]
2 Turkish soldiers, 5 pro-Turkey militiamen killed in southwest Afrin. [..]
4 Americans killed in Manbij blast identified. [..]
Syrian troops, Tahrir Al-Sham suddenly in combat in, near Aleppo city. [..]
Some Daesh still fighting in Al-Susah, but 35 killed. [..]
Yemen: UN says over 1 million people are displaced from Hodeida. [..]
Russia: Serbia police arrest Daesh member trying to assassinate Putin. [..]
REPORTS FROM IRAQ
Council of Representatives
Mansour Al-Baiji, a Bina’ CoR member said that the final touches are being placed on the proposed legislation to remove all foreign forces from Iraq. He says the law includes evacuating all military bases including those in the Kurdistan region. According to him, the legislation will be up for a vote soon. [Sumaria]
A Gulf paper says political differences are delaying the approval of Iraq’s 2019 budget. Kurdish groups may not vote for it because of the continuing issue over their budget share; the Kurds want to return it to 17%, while other parties want to keep it at 12%. [Sumaria]
The Secretary General of the Arab League stated that the Arab League summit in Tunisia would address “all Arab issues,” including reconstruction in Iraq. [Sumaria]
A political source said that the “digital wall” recently approved by the Iraqi National Security Council was a set of measures to protect official, business, and social Iraqi institutions from cyber attacks. [Sumaria]
Sumaria published photos of Jazeera Operations Command military units stationed along the Iraq-Syria border as they bombarded Daesh positions with artillery fire on Friday. [Sumaria]
The Turkish Foreign Ministry says it will activate its consulates in Basra and Mosul, and start 2 new ones, in Kirkuk and Najaf. The spokesman said that a new border crossing is being opened with Iraq to enhance trade relations. He says the opening of these consulates show the Turkish will to embrace all of Iraq, adding his country disapproves of sanctions against Iran which will mainly harm the Iranian people. [Anadolu]
Center (Rusafa, Karkh, etc.)
A sudden and severe deterioration of the weather prevented a demonstration from occurring in Baghdad. The demonstration was arranged by pro-Iran groups and would have demanded that US troops leave Iraq. [Basnews]
On Friday military intelligence units arrested a Daesh fighter in the Qarma subdistrict. [Ghad]
A similar story reported on Friday says that military intelligence units found a large stockpile of IEDs in Qarma. [Baghdadia]
A DaeshDaily source said on Friday that 2 PMF members were killed and 2 others wounded when an IED destroyed their pickup vehicle on the road between Baiji and Haditha.
A DaeshDaily source said on Friday that Daesh kidnapped 2 tribal PMF fighters near Zuwiya village.
Daesh said it set a poultry farm and 5 vehicles that belonged to an Iraqi Army “spy” on fire and stole his weapon on Tuesday in the Buhriz area. [ICDNJan18]
Central Diyala (Muqdadiya/Abu Saida)
The Muqdadiya District Council stated that war-related damage to state offices is about IQD 19 billion. The damage to civil property, houses, and shops is about IQD 37 billion and the agriculture and business sectors have suffered about IQD 30 million. [Rudaw]
Southwest ( Rashad)
Daesh said on Thursday it damaged a vehicle carrying PMF soldiers with an IED in 7th of Nisan village, in Rashad subdistrict. [A3maq]
A DaeshDaily source said on Friday that local police units captured 6 Daesh operatives in Al-Wihda, Al-Intisar, and Al-Mithaq neighborhoods, in east Mosul. The source said one of them was a senior official at Daesh’s “office of education.”
In a very similar story, the MoI reported that the 7th police battalion under Ninewa Police Command arrested 4 Daesh operatives from Daesh’s Ministry of Defense and captured 2 Daesh vehicles. The arrests were made in Al-Intisar, Al-Wihda, and Karama neighborhoods in east Mosul and Tilul Al-Atshana (Hamidat subdistrict, just west of Mosul city. [Sumaria]
The Directorate of Military Engineering, an explosives treatment battalion, and the director of land mines claim to have cleared “many” homes, buildings, streets, and mosques of IEDs and undetonated mines in the old section of Mosul city. [Madar]
A DaeshDaily source said on Friday that 2 PMF fighters were killed in a Daesh attack near the southern entrance of Hatra city.
On Friday evening, angry protesters set fire to a police station in Basra, demonstrating against corruption and poor services. [Basnews]
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You are invited to add information to or comment on any Daesh Daily story, about Iraq or other countries
REPORTS FROM TURKEY
The Turkish Foreign Ministry announced that President Erdogan would discuss developing a safe zone in Syria, similar to that in Idlib, with his Russian counterpart. [Eldorar]
REPORTS FROM SYRIA
Al-Sharq Al-Awsat reported that the SDF had presented a “road map” to Russia for the SDF to join forces with the Syrian regime. [Qasioun]
Former leader of the International Coalition against Daesh, Brett McGurk, said that President Trump’s decision to withdraw from Syria would cause the reemergence of Daesh. [Rudaw]
On Friday, the UN Secretary General said that any plan for north Syria must take Turkey’s legitimate concerns into account. [Qasioun]
Debka, an Israeli intelligence website, reported that there are about 10,000 pro-Iran Iraqi militants on the Syria-Iraq border waiting to enter Syria and confront Daesh if the Syrian government agrees. It would be the second major pro-Iran entry into Syria since 2014. [Qasioun]
Last Friday, Sada published an article warning that despite losing its territory in Hajin, instability in Iraq and Syria allows Daesh to survive. [Sada]
On Friday Hawar reported that the Mahmudiya neighborhood in Afrin witnessed an explosion. [Hawar]
Afrin Liberation forces killed 5 pro-Turkey militiamen and 2 Turkish soldiers in Jinderes, southwest Afrin, according to Kurdish media. [Hawar]
The SOHR says that investigations into the Manbij attack that killed US soldiers revealed that 2 people at least, a man and woman, were involved in the attack. The search for the man is underway in the area controlled by the Manbij Military Council. [SyriaHR]
BBC reported that 3 of the 4 US citizens who were killed in the blast on Manbij have been identified as Jonathan Farmer, a soldier; Shannon Kent, a sailor and cryptography specialist, and Scott Wirtz a civilian but a former Navy Seal. [BBC] The fourth was an Arab-American language specialist.
A DaeshDaily source said on Friday that the suicide terrorist who blew himself up in Manbij had been at Al-Hawl Camp in Hasaka. The source said that Daesh has “hundreds” of suicide terrorists in the camp and is recruiting more.
Central and West
Sputnik says intense fighting is taking place in Rashideen (Aleppo city), Al-Zahra’ (Shia town north of Aleppo city), and Ma’alia (spelling approx.) in Aleppo between Tahrir Al-Sham and the Syrian Army, in which the Army employed heavy artillery. The fighting began late Thursday night and was reported to be ongoing on Friday. [Syrianow]
Local sources reported a large explosion on Friday that hit a military command center in Idlib, killing 15 people including 9 civilians. [Enabbaladi]
East (Deir Ez-Zor)
SOHR reported that Coalition planes maintain their presence over the small 15 km2 remaining area held by Daesh in Albu Kamal, accompanied by continued pressure by SDF on Daesh.
The SOHR says 1,122 Daesh militants have been killed since September 10, 2018 and 621 SDF fighters have been killed during the same period. 367 civilians, including 130 children, have been killed. [SyriaHR]
SOHR reported that when the SDF advanced yesterday into Al-Susah, Daesh detonated 2 vehicles bombs. It also said that the SDF is now encircling 15 Daesh fighters who failed to escape Al-Susah under bad weather conditions. It reported 8 Daesh militants and 2 SDF fighters were killed. However, it also says Daesh managed to retrieve several positions in Al-Susah after pushing SDF units back. [SyriaHR]
Albu Kamal District
On Friday SDF leaders announced that its units had killed and injured 35 Daesh members in Al-Susah. [Sumaria]
OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS
The UN says in a report that over 1 million people have escaped Hodeida since the start of the Yemen war. The total number of families that left Hodeida from June 2018 to January 2019 is 174,717 families, and 48,300 additional individuals. [Rudaw]
The Fatwa Observatory analyzed a Daesh publication, published January 2019, called, “Refuting the Suspicions of the Retractors of the Muslim State” which highlights lying and deceit as a “lifeline” for the organization. The review notes that this is a marked transformation in Daesh ideology, which had previously been more aggressive. [AhlMisr]
The Libyan Army on Friday was able to kill a prominent Daesh leader in Al-Shati in south Libya. [Madar]
Anadolu reported that Khalifa Haftar’s forces, the Libyan National Army, killed 3 Daesh fighters in Sabha, in south Libya, during an operation to clear areas northwest of Sabha. One of the fighters killed was an Egyptian national. [Anadolu]
REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES
On Thursday a Canadian court convicted a woman of committing terrorist acts and attempting four times to join terrorist organizations times. She was arrested in 2017. [FaceIraq]
According to Russian media, Serbian security forces arrested a Daesh operative who had been planning to assassinate President Putin during his visit to Serbia on Thursday. The site says the man is a member of a local Daesh cell, and that a sniper rifle and a knife were found in his possession. [Anadolu]
Daesh published on Thursday the 165th issue of its Al-Naba’ magazine, including an infographic about its attacks last week in Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Somalia, west Africa, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. It claims it conducted 74 attacks, killing or wounding more than 200 people and destroying 39 vehicles. In this issue also, Daesh claimed responsibility for the apartment building explosion and a commuter bus bombing in the Russian city of Magnitogorsk. It said 39 people were killed and “tens” were missing from the first explosion, and three commuters were killed in the second explosion.
Al-Naba’ also published an “interview” with one of the Daesh terrorists in Manbij, who gave details about the Coalition and the SDF presence in the city, and threatened more attacks against them. The terrorist also claimed that Syrian Army officers had visited the city several times and met with SDF officials. [ICDNJan17]
On Dec 31, 2018, a section of an apartment block in the Russian city of Magnitogorsk collapsed in what the authorities reported was a utility gas explosion. A total of 39 bodies were found at the site. The next day, Jan 1, 2019, a commuter bus exploded in the city’s district where the affected building is located. Certain media outlets in Russia reported that the two incidents were connected and that a house explosion was in fact a terrorist act. Russia’s Investigative Committee has refuted the allegations. [Unian]
The Terrorism Research and Analysis Consortium (TRAC) said an Islamic State affiliate in the North Caucasus had planted a bomb “between the third and 10th floors” of the apartment block in the Urals city.
Russia’s Investigative Committee released a statement Friday saying that all explanations were being considered in its ongoing probe into the blast. The Committee said, however, that a gas leak was being considered as the most likely explanation and reiterated that no traces of explosive materials had been found at the site of the explosion.
“I call on journalists to refrain from trusting the messages of terrorist organizations, which, as is well-known, attribute all high-profile incidents in the world to themselves,” said the committee’s spokesperson, Svetlana Petrenko, in the statement.
Meanwhile, a widely circulated report published Friday by journalist Nikita Mogutin claimed that the apartment blast had been caused by explosives planted by three men who had planned a series of terrorist attacks in Magnitogorsk on New Year’s Eve. The unconfirmed report based on unnamed sources claimed that another explosive device had been found in the city on Jan. 1 and that the three plotters had been killed after attempting to flee security forces. [MoscowTimes]