An Update On ISIS Activities

January 22, 2019

January 22, 2019

 

A group of people standing in front of a crowd

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Yazidi Women Returned to Their Families in Sinjar (DD Jan 20)

 

 

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

UAE commits $500 million to help Iraq reconstruction. [..]

Anbar PC member calls out politicians trying to turn Anbar citizens against US. [..]

IFP, tribal PMFs stop Daesh attack in southern Salahuddin, kill 4. [..]

Mosul CoR member says 6,000 Ninewa citizens are still missing.​​ [..]

Reconstruction work begins on Nabi Younis Mosque in Mosul. [..]

Turks bomb Mount Sinjar again, targeting YPG members.​​ [..]

Basra farmers want dumping of Iranian tomatoes to stop. [..]

KDP, Gorran cooperating on formation of new Kurdistan government. [..]

 

Turkey

Erdogan tells Trump​​ that​​ Turkey is ready to take over security in Manbij.​​ [..]

 

Syria

McGurk alleges Trump consulted only Erdogan in making Syria withdrawal decision.​​ [..]

Financial Times says US withdrawal prompted Arab states to resume diplomatic relations with Syria. [..]

Jordan follows UAE,​​ Bahrain, Saudi Arabia​​ in normalizing relations with Syria. [..]

Daesh car bomb attack against US & SDF soldiers in Hasaka causes reported casualties.​​ [..]

Huge mass grave found in southern Raqqa, with 600-800 people.​​ [..]

Daesh loses Al-Susah, then loses 61 fighters in counter-attack.​​ [..]

SDF captures Mozan; moving on Daesh in Al-Baghouz. [..]

SOHR raises alarm on civilian bombing casualties, children buried in rubble, in Al-Baghouz area.​​ [..]

3 more Yazidi women among 700 freed by SDF. [..]

Israeli airstrikes around Damascus caused many Iranian, Syrian casualties. [..]

 

Other​​ countries

Afghanistan: ​​​​ Taliban attack in central Afghanistan kills 36 soldiers, wounds 58.​​ [..]

Pakistan: ​​​​ Khalilzad, Votel discuss Afghan peace process with Pakistan leaders. [..]

 

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Council of Representatives

The Sa’irun party says​​ it wants​​ to remove an article from the budget law which allows​​ the government to​​ sell government companies.​​ It does not​​ want the government to sell these companies, or at least the profitable ones. The reasoning is that these companies belong to the people and it should stay that way.​​ [Mada]

 

Reconstruction

The Coalition says the UAE allocated $500 million to help with reconstructing Iraq. This came in a tweet also saying that the amount is​​ in addition to​​ $5.5 billion in private investments. [Rudaw]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

Through a live video broadcast at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that while the US and its allies had defeated Daesh in Syria and Iraq, there was still work to do. [Anadolu] [CNN]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ We would like to have a moratorium declared on politically self-serving declarations that Daesh has been defeated. ​​ Aside from the annoyance​​ caused to those of us who know better (a lot of people, actually), and the exaggeration involved, there is a risk that the frequent repetition of such statements will persuade people that the statements are true and provide the basis for further and unwise withdrawal of support.

 

Also see related story below under Iran.

 

The​​ New York Times​​ wrote that despite being reduced to around 1% of the territory it formerly had controlled, there remained the potential for a Daesh resurgence. The​​ NYT​​ noted that Daesh had previously rebuilt itself after the US troop withdrawal from Iraq in 2011. In 2018,​​ according to​​ one​​ dataset, Daesh carried out an estimated 1,200 attacks in Iraqafter​​ Prime Minister​​ Haider Al-Abadi’s declared​​ victory over Daesh.​​ 

The​​ NYT​​ summarized recent reports by the Pentagon, the UN, and CSIS that estimated Daesh still had between 20,000 and 30,000 fighters in Iraq and Syria, and​​ cited​​ recent analyses by Hassan Hassan and Michael Knights saying that Daesh was transitioning back into a guerilla insurgency strategy. It​​ also​​ quoted Knights as saying that Daesh was focusing on killing mukhtars in Iraq because that helped undercut public trust in the government’s ability to protect them. Knights said, “They realized you don’t have to mount 6,000 attacks per month ….​​ You just have to kill the right 50 people each month.” [Sumaria] [NYT]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Regarding the mukhtars, this is exactly why we have given so much emphasis to the assassination of mukhtars.​​ One implied Daesh message to Iraqis: If your mukhtar is not safe, neither are you.​​ 

 

On Monday, the​​ Washington Post​​ published an interview with an Iraqi scientist who said he had helped Daesh make chemical weapons following the fall of Mosul. The scientist, Suleiman Al-Afari, had been a geologist with the Ministry of Industry and Minerals. He described his decision in pragmatic terms, saying, “They had become the government and we now worked for them … We wanted to work so we could get paid.” Al-Afari said that despite knowing little about chemical weapons, he spent 15 months organizing a supply chain for a Daesh program to create mustard gas. The article noted that in August 2015, Daesh used mustard gas against Peshmerga fighters south of Erbil; the gas was initially assumed to have been stolen from the Syrian government or the remains of Iraq’s chemical-weapons program. US and Coalition airstrikes subsequently targeted suspected Daesh chemical-weapons facilities and technicians, and Al-Afari was captured in 2016. He is currently a prisoner awaiting execution in Erbil. [Sumaria] [WaPo]

 

Foreign policy

On Saturday, the Coalition said that “Coalition and partner forces” had destroyed more than 730 IEDs throughout Iraq, and that airstrikes had destroyed 10 Daesh weapons caches and safehouses between January 7 to 13. [InherentResolve]

 

BAGHDAD

Baghdad Ops Command said on Tuesday that​​ it​​ had arrested 10 wanted persons in various areas of the capital, including 4 wanted on terrorism charges. The terrorism suspects were arrested in Mada’in, Ghazaliya, Shuala, and Abu Ghraib.​​ [Ghad]​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ The locations are noteworthy—all along the edges of the city, and two (Mada’in and Abu Ghraib) outside the city boundaries altogether. Daesh keeps going back to the same places. The good news is that the number of violent incidents elsewhere in Baghdad has dropped noticeably, and there are many days (like today) when there are only one or two incidents reported.

 

Southwest​​ (Rasheed, etc.)

A security source said a locally-made IED was defused by EODs in the Al-Sina’i neighborhood, in Abu Dsheer​​ in the​​ Rasheed​​ neighborhood. [Sumaria]

 

ANBAR

Athal Obeid, an Anbar Provincial Council member, warned that certain political forces are trying to put​​ the “sons of​​ Anbar​​ at​​ war​​ with​​ the US forces, and​​ use​​ Anbar​​ as​​ an arena to settle accounts with the Americans. He says​​ that​​ the US presence is a sovereign issue of the​​ federal government,​​ asking​​ the population of​​ Anbar to keep away from such​​ destructive trends.​​ Peace and reconstruction, not war, is what Anbar needs right now, he says. [BasNews]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ The PC member is likely referring to the pro-Iran PMFs operating on the Anbar side of the Syria border and​​ trying​​ to expand their influence.​​ 

 

Several officers in Anbar have been issued orders of arrest, including an intelligence director, based on an Iraqi law which says that any state employee who tortures (or commands another to torture) a defendant, witness, or expert for information, confessions, or evidence shall be punished with imprisonment. Torture is defined as the use of “force or threat.” [Rudaw]

 

SALAHUDDIN

Shirqat

Daesh said it killed or wounded several PMF members on Saturday when it set off​​ two​​ booby-trapped houses in Sdaira village. [ICDNJan21]

 

Baiji

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that Salahuddin Operations​​ Command units captured 4 persons who were smuggling food, mobile phone pre-paid cards, and clothes to Daesh terrorists in the Makhoul Mountains area.

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that Salahuddin SWAT units captured 4 Daesh terrorists who were hiding in a tunnel in the desert near Siniya. The source said the units also confiscated weapons, food supplies, and an electric generator from the tunnel.

 

Tikrit

The PMF media office said that units from the 88th​​ PMF Brigade had found a “medical room” used by Daesh near the Ajeel oil field. The statement said that the room contained medical supplies and chemical masks, which Daesh members had used while making IEDs.​​ [Buratha]​​ 

 

The Security Media Center says that security personnel under Salahuddin Ops Command destroyed 3 Daesh hideouts in the Tikrit desert. The hideouts contained large quantities of IEDs and​​ related materials, the statement says. [Rudaw]

 

Daesh said it damaged two PMF SUVs with two IEDs on Saturday near Al-Hassan village, in Tikrit​​ District. [A3maq]

 

Daesh said on Saturday it wounded three Oil Facilities Protection policemen and damaged their SUV with an IED near Allas oilfield. [ICDNJan19]

 

Southern Salahuddin​​ (Balad)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that IFP and tribal PMF units stopped a Daesh attack on their military positions in Al-Jam’iya village, in Dhuluiya​​ subdistrict. The source said the units killed 4 Daesh terrorists, including​​ Saad Al-Dallah, a senior Daesh commander in the​​ Samarra​​ area.​​ 

The Security Media Center said on Tuesday​​ that​​ security personnel had killed a Daesh official called Saad Al-Dallah north of the Dhuluiya airport.​​ [PUKMedia]

 

DIYALA

Baquba/Southeast Diyala

Daesh said it wounded an IFP member on Saturday when it targeted a military position in Al-Kubba village,​​ 12 miles northeast of Baquba, with light weapons. [ICDNJan20]​​ 

 

Daesh said it wounded Shia people and damaged their vehicle with an IED on Monday in the Kanaan subdistrict. [ICDNJan22]​​ 

 

Central Diyala (Muqdadiya/Abu Saida)

Daesh said it attacked two IFP members with light weapons on Monday in Sheikhi village, near Abu Saida, wounding one of them. [ICDNJan22]​​ 

In another version, Daesh said its snipers killed one IFP member and severely wounded another. [ICDNJan22] In yet another version, Daesh said both IFP members were killed. [A3maq]

 

Northern Diyala (Khanaqin)

Khanaqin

Daesh said its snipers killed two IFP members on Sunday in the Qulay area, in Khanaqin. [A3maq]

 

Daesh published on Sunday photos of setting fire to a factory that belongs to a Shi’i​​ in the Qulay area. [ICDNJan20]

Daesh had said that on January 10, it set​​ on fire​​ a factory and 5 vehicles that belonged to an Asayish member,​​ near​​ Halwan​​ Bridge, in the Qulay area, Khanaqin​​ District. [ICDNJan11]

 

Al-Khalis

Daesh said it killed two PMF soldiers in an attack on Saturday on the Al-Safra area, in Udhaim subdistrict.​​ ​​ [A3maq]

 

KIRKUK

Hawija​​ 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that 2 Turkmen PMF members were killed and 2 others wounded in an IED explosion on the road between Hawija and Bashir​​ (in Taza). The source said the PMFs arrested several young men from Barima village after the explosion.​​ Bashir is a predominantly Turkmen town.

 

Southwest (Taza)

 

See Taza-related story just above.

 

NINEWA

Naif Al-Shammari, a CoR MP for Mosul, says that 6,000 Ninewa citizens are still missing, with no information about their whereabouts. He says that they were kidnapped by Daesh previously, but now, their families in Ninewa and Baghdad are being blackmailed to acquire information. He says PM Adel Abd Ul-Mahdi is well aware of this situation. [Sumaria]

 

Makhmur

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that Daesh terrorists were regrouping in areas between Gwer and Hamdaniya, and threatening attacks on nearby areas.

DaeshDaily comment.​​ We reported earlier that Daesh was gathering a force in Gwer, which borders Hamdaniya, to make attacks on Hamdaniya villages.​​ 

 

Nineveh Plain (Hamdaniya)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that local police units captured a Daesh member at a checkpoint near Hamdaniya. The source said​​ he​​ was coming back to Ninewa from Erbil.

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that PMF units captured a Daesh terrorist in Khaznah village, in Hamdaniya​​ District. The source said the units also confiscated a silenced gun and hand grenades. The terrorist admitted he was planning to kill PMF members in the area.​​ 

 

Mosul​​ city

Nawfal Al-Akoub,​​ the Governor​​ of Ninewa,​​ announced the start of reconstruction of​​ the​​ Nabi Younis​​ Mosque, which was​​ destroyed by Daesh.​​ He said that the mosque location in west Mosul was cleared​​ of​​ all wreckage by Iraqi and UAE companies,​​ and that​​ the next step of reconstruction has​​ come. The work will go​​ on​​ non-stop, without a deadline,​​ until it is​​ finished, he says. [BasNews]

 

Daesh said it wounded two Iraqi Army members on Friday when it destroyed their checkpoint with an IED​​ in the​​ Al-Baath neighborhood, in east Mosul. [A3maq]​​ 

 

Mosul District

South (Hammam Al-Alil/Shura/Qayara)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that 22 Daesh members fled from the Al-Jada’a IDP camp in Qayara to the desert after getting information that security units would arrest them.​​ 

 

Western​​ Ninewa

Tal Afar

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that security units captured 4 persons wanted on terrorism charges in a search​​ of​​ several areas in Tal Afar District.

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that 116 displaced families returned from the Hammam Al-Alil camp to their houses in Tal Ghazal, Ayn Talawi, and Shara’e villages, after passing security checks. ​​ 

 

Sinjar

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that Yazidi YPG units captured and then executed a Daesh terrorist, originally from Badoush, in the Sinjar area. The source said the terrorist was trying to get back to Ninewa after fleeing from eastern Hasaka.

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that 2 YPG members were killed and 6 others wounded in a Turkish airstrike on Mount Sinjar.​​ 

Turkish airplanes carried out airstrikes against targets in the Mount Sinjar​​ area​​ and​​ the​​ Mount Korek​​ area in Erbil Province, southwest of Rawandoz, reportedly targeting​​ PKK weapons caches, tunnels, and warehouses. [SkyNews]​​ 

 

Southern Ninewa

Baaj

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that PMF units found the IDs of Taha Khalaf Ajil Al-Ahmadi, the former Daesh​​ wali​​ of Mosul, in a tunnel near Baaj. The source said the tunnel was bombed last year by Coalition planes, suggesting that the terrorist, a Lieutenant General in Saddam’s Iraqi Army and a founder of AQI, had been killed in that airstrike.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that 2 PMF soldiers were killed in a Daesh attack in the Tal Safouk area​​ along the Syria border.​​ 

 

SOUTHERN IRAQ

Basra

Basra farmers said on Tuesday that they would demonstrate on Wednesday to protest the flow of tomatoes from Iran that are flooding the market, if the Ministry of Agriculture did not implement a previously agreed-upon ban on the import of Iranian tomatoes. They say that “Iranian agents” are behind the import policy, and are aiming to control the Iraqi markets. [BasNews]

 

KURDISTAN​​ NEWS

ERBIL/SULEIMANIYA

Hoshyar Zebari, former Iraq minister and a member of the Political Bureau of the KDP, says that the KDP and Gorran (Change) parties agreed to put aside their differences and expedite forming the new KRG government. The 2 parties formed committees and signed agreements following lengthy discussions. They are yet to agree on the position of Speaker of the Kurdistan Parliament and the cabinet. [Rudaw]

 

Also see story above under Sinjar regarding Turkish airstrikes​​ in Erbil Province.

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

Foreign policy

The office of the Turkish Presidency said that Presidents​​ Erdogan and Trump had another phone call on Sunday, in which Erdogan told Trump that Turkey was “ready to take over” security in Manbij. The office’s statement said that Erdogan added that the recent suicide bombing targeting US troops in Manbij was a “provocative act” aimed at affecting Trump’s decision to withdraw US troops from Syria. White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said that Trump and Erdogan “agreed to continue to pursue a negotiated solution for northeast Syria.” [Reuters]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ This story gets more annoying as it goes along. The people of Manbij are not threatened by Daesh, which they defeated long ago. They are threatened by Turkey, as part of its anti-Kurdish campaign in northern Syria, masquerading as an anti-terrorism campaign. The idea that somehow Turkey will solve an American problem by taking over “security” in Manbij is worse than a joke, as it would bring only insecurity to Manbij. The people of Manbij did not​​ fight​​ to free​​ themselves from​​ Daesh​​ in order to be sold out to the Turks.​​ 

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Foreign policy

United States

Former US Envoy to the International Coalition Brett McGurk said in an interview with CNN that US influence in Syria and leverage over Russia has “evaporated,” and that Daesh is still undefeated. McGurk also confirmed that Trump’s decision to withdraw US troops happened over the course of his phone call with Erdogan, without “any serious consultation” with his national security team. [Qasioun] [CNN]

 

The​​ Financial Times​​ says that President Trump’s decision to withdraw US troops pushed some Arab countries to normalize relations with Syria, noting that the UAE and Bahrain reopened their embassies immediately after Trump’s withdrawal announcement. Saudi Arabia is expected to follow, despite its current refusal. Trump also mentioned the readiness of Saudi Arabia to contribute to funding the reconstruction in Syria, although the Saudis denied this. It says that Al-Assad will make use of the money to reconstruct Syria, but that it is difficult to get more out of him, as he is not the type that accepts compromises. [ElDorar] [FT]

 

Jordan

Jordan upgraded its diplomatic representation in Syria, marking another Arab step towards normalizing relations, following the UAE and Bahrain. Jordan recently appointed a​​ charge d’affaires​​ to run its embassy in Damascus. [Arabi21]

 

Russia

The Russian newspaper​​ Kommersant​​ says that Syria did not use S-300 surface-to-air missiles during the recent Israeli attacks, as Syrian soldiers are not prepared to use them yet. It says the crews will be ready to use the missiles at the beginning of March.​​ [ElDorar]

 

Northwest

Manbij /Al-Bab/Jarabulus

Daesh warned the US that it would carry out further operations similar to those recently carried out in Manbij and Hasaka. The 2 operations, by a suicide attacker and car bomb, killed both US and SDF soldiers. [ElDorar]

 

Also see story just below

 

Northeast​​ 

Hasaka

Daesh claimed responsibility for a car bomb attack in​​ southern​​ Hasaka​​ on Monday via its​​ A3maq​​ media outlet. The attack targeted a convoy of US troops and “local fighters” at a checkpoint. The Coalition confirmed that the attack had taken place but said there were no US casualties. The SDF said via their website that there had been no casualties from the attack. However, the SOHR reported that the attack had killed 5 SDF fighters and injured 2 US soldiers. [WSJ]​​ [AFP]

Daesh’s version said that it killed or wounded​​ thirteen​​ US and SDF soldiers and destroyed several vehicles,​​ when one of its suicide terrorists attacked a Coalition and SDF convoy at Barrier 47 in Shaddadi city with a vehicle bomb. [ICDNJan21]

 

Daesh said it killed an SDF member with a silenced gun on Saturday in Janah village, south of Shaddadi. [ICDNJan20]​​ 

 

Raqqa

Raqqa city​​ & district

A rapid response team found what they described as the 8th​​ largest mass grave in Raqqa. The graveyard cover over 20 acres in Al-Fakhikha village, south of the Euphrates. There were reportedly 600-800 bodies found, which were a mix of civilians and Daesh fighters. The recovery and identification process has started. [Hawar]

 

Daesh said it killed or wounded eight SDF members and damaged their SUV with machine guns on Saturday in an ambush near Al-Sakura farm, north of Raqqa city. [A3maq] [ICDNJan20]

 

Daesh said it killed or wounded ten SDF fighters and damaged a vehicle on Sunday morning in Jazra Milaj village east of Al-Karama​​ town, when it attacked a convoy that was heading towards the battle fronts in the Albu Kamal area. [ICDNJan20]​​ 

 

In the same area,​​ Daesh said on Monday it killed an SDF member with a silenced gun in Hos village, in Al-Karama subdistrict. [ICDNJan21]​​ 

 

North Raqqa​​ (Ayn Eissa,​​ Tal Abyad, etc.)

Daesh said it killed three SDF fighters, wounded another, and damaged their SUV with an IED on Saturday in Abu Qabr village, north of Suluk in northern Raqqa. [ICDNJan20]​​ 

 

Central and West​​ 

Latakia

A Suzuki car bomb exploded in Latakia, killing the driver and wounding 4 civilians, press sources say.​​ The state-run news agency​​ SANA​​ confirmed the injuries.​​ [Hawar]​​ [Sumaria]​​ 

 

East (Deir Ez-Zor)

Deir Ez-Zor​​ District

Daesh said on Sunday it killed four SDF fighters, wounded three others, and damaged two SUVs in an ambush in Al-Takihi village, in Al-Busayrah subdistrict. [ICDNJan20]

 

Mayadin​​ District

Daesh said on Saturday it shot and killed two SDF members with machine guns in Al-Jardhi village, in Dhiban subdistrict. [ICDNJan19]

 

Daesh said on Saturday it shot and wounded an SDF “spy” with machine guns in Dhiban town. [ICDNJan19]

 

Daesh said on Tuesday it shot and killed an SDF “spy” in Dernaj village, in Dhiban subdistrict. [A3maq]

 

Albu Kamal​​ District

Combat

The SDF issued a statement on the fighting in Al-Susah, saying that it had killed 61 Daesh fighters and advanced 1 km after “hours” of fighting. [PYDRojava]

Daesh​​ had​​ counterattacked SDF forces in Al-Susah, which was recently​​ captured​​ by the SDF. The SDF says that the Daesh attack started with explosion of 2 vehicle bombs,​​ leading to​​ violent clashes​​ on the outskirts of the town,​​ while​​ Coalition planes attacked Daesh units. [EnabBaladi]

 

Meanwhile, the SDF has captured Mozan,​​ near Al-Baghouz​​ in Al-Susah subdistrict.​​ 

Daesh said it killed or wounded five SDF fighters in fighting and mortar shelling on Monday in Mozan village. [ICDNJan22]​​ Daesh also said it destroyed an SDF bulldozer with a rocket on Sunday near Mozan village. [A3maq]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ These “victorious” stories continue Daesh’s practice of responding to defeats by writing something that makes it sound like Daesh is winning. There will be more of them before Albu Kamal is over.

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that Daesh terrorists in Al-Baghouz town refused an SDF offer to evacuate the town for the desert. The source said the terrorists, led by a former officer for Saddam’s army, said they would fight to the death.​​ 

 

Airstrikes​​ and casualties

On Saturday, the Coalition said that their airstrikes had killed more than 200 Daesh fighters between January 7 to 13, and noted​​ in that context​​ that​​ its​​ “Syrian partners” (i.e., the SDF) had liberated the towns of Al-Kashma, Sirat Masoud, and Al-Sha’afa during the previous 2 weeks. [InherentResolve]

 

The SOHR says it received voice recordings proving that many children in areas bombed by the Coalition are trapped under rubble. The people of Al-Baghouz asked the SDF and the Coalition to announce a humanitarian truce to allow civilians to evacuate bombed areas through safe exit routes. [SyriaHR]

The SOHR reported continued loss of civilian life by SDF and Coalition shelling of Daesh-held areas in Baghouz Foqani (Upper Baghouz) and adjacent villages. It says that the total number of civilians killed since September 10 is 388, among them 141 children and 86 women, while 1,168 Daesh fighters, including leaders, were killed, versus 630 SDF fighters. Daesh executed 713 prisoners for various reasons during this period, including deserters from the battlefield. [SyriaHR]

 

Civilians​​ freed

The SDF freed over 700 women and children from Daesh activity in Al-Susah, Al-Baghouz, and Hajin, Kurdish sources say. [Hawar]

Jorf​​ wrote on Tuesday that “hundreds” of civilian families, most women and children, had arrived in the SDF-held area around Al-Susah after fleeing the remaining Daesh-held territory. It wrote that over the past 2 days, several small groups of IDPs have fled the Al-Baghouz area to arrive in SDF-held territory, before being transferred to the Al-Hawl IDP camp in Hasaka. [Jorf]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that the SDF handed over 3 Yazidi women to their families in Sinjar. The source said the women had been kidnapped by Daesh and were freed by the SDF from Al-Susah town. The source said there are still many Yazidi women who left the town but don’t want to rejoin their families in Sinjar, because they don’t want to leave their children. The source​​ also​​ said that many Yazidi families refuse to accept the children of Daesh terrorists.​​ 

 

South​​ 

Damascus/Rif Damashq​​ 

The SOHR says that there were​​ 21​​ casualties from​​ the recent​​ Israeli attacks, the most intense to date inside Syria, including 6 Syrian soldiers, 12 Iranians,​​ and​​ 3 other​​ non-Syrian, non-Iranian​​ fighters. The attacks destroyed Iranian ammunition depots and came in 3 waves of air and missile strikes in and around Damascus. [SyriaHR]

 

Daraa

The SOHR reported that tensions led to an exchange of fire between 2 groups that​​ had formerly​​ reconciled with the government and joined the Russia-supported 5th​​ Corps, in Busra Al-Sham (aka Bosra), in Daraa. An explosion was also reported, believed to be targeting the house of a local commander in the area. [SyriaHR]

Qasioun​​ wrote that the fighting on Tuesday​​ followed​​ the dismissal of the​​ 5th​​ Corps,​​ and​​ started when​​ the​​ militia​​ known as “Youth of the Year” confiscated drugs from a car belonging to another​​ militia​​ and arrested those inside. [Qasioun]

 

OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS

 

Neighboring countries

Iran

Speaking at Davos, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the Iranian threat is “very real” in Yemen, Syria, and Lebanon. He added that Iran is extending its efforts to deter Iraqi freedom and progress. [Sumaria] [TheNational]

 

Yemen

Daesh said on Monday it killed or wounded Al-Qaeda members and damaged their SUV with an IED in the Marikh area, in southwest Baidha. [A3maq]

 

Daesh published on Saturday a photo of one of its terrorists, saying he was killed in Baidha. [ICDNJan19]

 

Daesh said on Tuesday it stopped a Houthi attack on the Za’aj area in Qifa, killing or wounding many fighters and forcing the rest to flee. [ICDNJan22]

 

North Africa

Egypt

Egyptian authorities say that national security units killed 5 Muslim Brotherhood fighters, who they say were planning attacks against police and government facilities in Egypt. The 5 were hiding in an abandoned workshop north of Cairo. [Anadolu]

 

The General Command of the Egyptian Armed Forces published on Tuesday a statement on their effort to combat terrorism​​ in cooperation​​ with the Egyptian police. The statement said that during this reporting period, they had “eliminated” 44​​ takfiri​​ individuals in various operations, as well as eliminating 15 others in an operation by the civilian police. It also said that they arrested 142 wanted persons, destroyed many caches, safehouses, and vehicles used by terrorists, and cleared 242 IEDs.​​ Border police destroyed 6 tunnels used for smuggling in the northern Sinai. During this period, 1 officer and 6 soldiers were killed during counter-terrorism operations.​​ [AhlMisr]​​ [Egyptian MoD]

 

Daesh said on Monday it damaged an Egyptian Army M60 tank with an RPG rocket, and hit a bulldozer with an IED in clashes near Al-Wifaq village, west of Rafah. [A3maq] [ICDNJan21]

 

Daesh said its snipers hit an Egyptian soldier on Saturday in Al-Ahrash Camp, in Rafah city. [ICDNJan20]

 

REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES

 

UNITED STATES

Police arrested 3 men and a 16-year-old in Greece, upstate New York, who were suspected of planning attacks against a Muslim community center in Delaware County. They were charged with criminal possession of a firearm and conspiracy. [Anadolu] [CNN]

 

EUROPE

Russia

The Russian counter-terrorism agency says that an attempt to hijack a Russian plane and divert it to Afghanistan was thwarted. A 41-year-old Russian citizen tried to force the plane to change course, but he was convinced that refueling the plane was necessary, and was arrested on landing. [SyriaNow]

 

AFRICA

Somalia

Daesh said on Saturday it shot and killed a neighborhood mukhtar at Bakaara market in Mogadishu city. [A3maq]

 

Daesh said on Saturday it shot and killed a Somali Army member and stole his machine gun at Karama 1 intersection, in Bosaso city. [ICDNJan19]

 

Nigeria

The Nigerian military said that Special Forces troops responded to another​​ Boko Haram attack in Baga on Saturday, killing 5 Boko Haram fighters. [DailyPost]

On Sunday, the Nigerian Army said that it had killed a total of 8 Boko Haram fighters in Baga.​​ [VanguardNGR]

Daesh’s version said that it killed or wounded several Nigerian soldiers in an attack on Saturday on a military position near Baga, in Borno State. [ICDNJan20] [A3maq]

 

The Nigerian Army said that on Sunday, it “neutralized scores” of Boko Haram fighters who attacked a military base in Buni-Yadi, Gujba​​ Local Government,​​ in​​ Yobe State​​ in​​ northeastern Nigeria. [VanguardNGR]

 

Daesh said it killed or wounded several Nigerian soldiers in an attack on Saturday on a military position in Karito town, in Borno State. [ICDNJan20] [A3maq]​​ 

 

ASIA

Afghanistan

The Afghan National Directorate of Security said that 36 security personnel​​ had been​​ killed and 58 wounded​​ on Monday​​ in a coordinated suicide bombing and shooting attack on a base in Maidan Wardak, central Afghanistan.​​ Earlier casualty estimates had been significantly lower. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.​​ [Khaama]​​ [Khaama]

 

Also see stories under “Pakistan,” just below

 

Daesh said on Saturday it shot and killed an Afghan policeman in District 2, Kabul city. [A3maq]

 

Daesh said on Saturday it targeted the Coalition base in Bagram with an BM1 rocket. [ICDNJan19]

 

Pakistan

US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation, Zalmay​​ Khalilzad,​​ concluded his visit to Pakistan on Monday with optimism, writing on Twitter, “We’re heading in the right direction with more steps by Pakistan coming that will lead to concrete results.” [Khaama]

 

Meanwhile,​​ US CENTCOM Commander General Joseph Votel met with Pakistani Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javad Bajwa to discuss the Afghan peace and reconciliation process, according to a statement released by the Pakistani military on Monday. [Khaama]

 

The leader of the Pakistani group Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Sami (JUI-S), Maulana Hamidullah Haq, gave a speech on Monday, in which he urged the Taliban to show flexibility in upcoming peace talks, saying that​​ the talks were the only way to restore peace. [Khaama]

 

 

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