An Update On ISIS Activities

March 7, 2019

March 7, 2019

 

A group of people around each other

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Iraqi Children Freed from Daesh in Al-Baghouz (Bas​​ News March 6)

 

 

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

President Salih wants more international help to handle IDP problem. [..]

Yazidi human rights group wants Iraq to use detainee interviews for intel on missing Yazidis. [..]

Major Daesh attack between Makhmur & Kirkuk kills at least 6 PMFs, wounds 39,​​ with many others​​ missing.​​ [..]

Human Rights Commission reveals the grim toll: 4,720 bodies recovered so far from Mosul. [..]

KRG official slams Human Rights Watch child-torture allegations. [..]

 

Syria

US pressing European allies for Coalition stabilization plan for NE Syria.​​ [..]

Assassination attempt on pro-Coalition militia leader near Al-Tanaf leaves him wounded but alive. [..]

3,000 more Daesh fighters & families surrender to SDF in Al-Baghouz. [..]

Total Deir Ez-Zor evacuees now over 17,000 in last 3 weeks.​​ [..]

15 more Yazidis freed in Al-Baghouz.​​ [..]

 

Other​​ countries

Saudi Arabia: ​​​​ UN Human Rights Council slams Saudis for mistreating women activists. [..]

Afghanistan: ​​ ​​​​ Militants attack Kabul​​ celebration attended by major Afghan leaders; 3 killed.​​ [..]

India/Kashmir: ​​ Indian jihadi throws grenade in a bus station; kills 1, wounds 32. [..]

 

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Anti-Daesh campaign

Iraqi​​ President Barham Salih, saying​​ that Iraq has fought terrorism on the world’s behalf, requested more international support to handle the IDP problem. He said that the victory against Daesh was Iraqi-made, and was not easy. He​​ said that the Iraqi government and the Syrian government cooperated in military and security aspects regarding the Daesh threat.​​ 

He added that an agreement was reached with France to try French terrorists in Iraq if they committed crimes inside Iraq.​​ He was speaking to the​​ Saudi TV channel​​ Al-Hadath.​​ [IraqPress]​​ [ElDorar]

 

On Thursday, a Yazidi human rights organization, the Roja Shingal Organization for Human Rights, called on the Iraqi government not to surrender Daesh members from Syria to foreign states until they undergo​​ a DNA test to prove their nationality and identity, and after thorough investigations to achieve justice and uncover the fate of the thousands of Yazidis remaining with Daesh. [BasNews]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ This raises a good idea. The next few months may be the last chance to recover a significant number of the women and children abducted in 2014. A lot of Daesh members are in custody and virtually all will be subjected to questioning. Asking what they know, and did, in​​ relation to captured Yazidis should be added to the usual questions. The same questions should be asked of all the Daesh women who have arrived at the Al-Hawl camp and other places of refuge. Some of​​ them​​ have answers too.​​ “I don’t know anything” answers should be treated with skepticism. Aside from the investigative initiative, Roja Shingal seems to be betting that DNA tests will identify Daesh children with Yazidi mothers.

 

Iraq Press​​ published a follow-up video on 4 children who had been abducted by Daesh from Tal Afar and subsequently freed by the SDF. [IraqPress]

 

The Ninewa Criminal Court sentenced a Daesh convict to death on Thursday. The convict was active in Daesh’s “security squads” in Shirqat. [Sumaria]​​ 

 

BAGHDAD

South​​ (Dora, Yusufiyah, Mahmudiya, etc.)

Baghdad​​ Ops​​ Command​​ said that the​​ 17th​​ Army​​ Division arrested a terrorism​​ suspect in​​ southern Baghdad, while​​ the​​ 6th​​ Army​​ Division​​ and ​​​​ 2nd​​ and 3rd​​ IFP​​ Divisions arrested 15​​ other suspects​​ on theft, attempted murder,​​ and drug charges in various parts of Baghdad. [Ghad]​​ 

 

ANBAR

Iraq designated large areas of the Anbar desert as “military zones” following​​ reports​​ of Daesh fighters entering these areas.​​ The​​ Iraqi​​ Armed​​ Forces called​​ on​​ shepherds, Bedouins, and​​ truffle gatherers,​​ among others,​​ to leave​​ these​​ areas until further notice. Iraqi and​​ Coalition planes​​ carried​​ out​​ airstrikes on targets near Kubaisa,​​ and​​ continue to​​ monitor​​ the area.​​ A​​ widescale​​ land operation by Iraqi forces to clear the desert of Daesh​​ elements​​ was also announced.​​ [Sumaria]​​ 

 

Ramadi

A security source in Anbar says 300 hand grenades, in addition to detonators and other explosive materials, were recovered from​​ the​​ Habbaniya Lake​​ area. The source described the materials as Daesh war detritus. [BasNews]

 

Anah​​ (including Rawa)

A security source in Anbar said that an IED exploded in the Anah desert, killing 1 truffle harvester and wounding 2 others. [BasNews]

 

SALAHUDDIN

Samarra

Samarra Ops Command said that army helicopters attacked Daesh positions near​​ Al-‘Uwrah and​​ Al-Kosh​​ (spelling approx.) in​​ northeastern​​ Samarra,​​ destroying a vehicle and killing 3​​ fighters. [Ghad]​​ 

 

DIYALA

Sadiq Al-Husseini, of the Security Committee for the Diyala Provincial Council, says that Diyala security personnel​​ have​​ arrested many so-called ”Daesh look-alikes,” who are​​ actually​​ crooks extorting people by claiming they are members of Daesh, but​​ are​​ not​​ Daesh​​ members. [Buratha]​​ 

 

KIRKUK

The Security Media Center said that Daesh ambushed unarmed Turkmen PMF soldiers who were returning from leave on the MosulTuz road near Makhmur, killing 6 and wounding 31 others. [Sumaria] [Sumaria]

Peshmerga leaders said on Thursday that the Iraqi Army requested its support on Wednesday night after Daesh launched an attack on PMF forces. A Peshmerga leader from Makhmur said that Daesh attacked a​​ PMF​​ vehicle convoy, first killing the drivers and then killing 4 other PMF members. 39 others were injured in the attack. He said other PMF fighters were also missing, with their fates unknown. Another Iraqi security leader said that between 70 to 100 PMF members were missing, killed, or injured in the attack. The source said that the attack occurred in west Kirkuk. [BasNews]

A statement from the 15th​​ PMF Brigade, who were attacked in the incident, said that the attack took place in Kirkuk Province.​​ [PressIraq]​​ 

Forat​​ wrote that security personnel and Army Air carried out a “large” operation on Wednesday evening to track down the perpetrators.​​ [Forat]

A security source said that the Director of Security for the PMF had arrived in Kirkuk city on Thursday to investigate the incident. The source said that he formed a commission of inquiry and asked city residents to report Daesh sleeper cells. The Director of Security said that an intelligence effort would begin immediately to track down the perpetrators of the attack. [Sumaria]​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Much is unclear in this terrible incident. Some clarity on where the attack took place would be a good start. Our first question would be why such a large number of military personnel were traveling through an unstable area with no weapons; military and police have often been attacked while off-duty. Our second question would be how many security personnel were traveling with this convoy. There is nothing in the story​​ so far​​ to suggest that anybody shot back.​​ 

 

NINEWA

Fadhil Al-Garawi, a member of the Iraqi High Human Rights Commission, said on Thursday that 4,720 bodies had been recovered in Ninewa Province as of​​ March 10. 2,666 bodies have been identified,​​ 851​​ of​​ which were​​ children. [Sumaria]​​ 

 

Makhmur

 

See major Makhmur-related story under Kirkuk above

 

Mosul​​ city

A senior Ninewa police source said on Thursday that while Daesh members were still trying to hide in Mosul among the citizenry, they were routinely reported and arrested. The source said terrorists no longer had a chance to meet each other or form groups or cells in Mosul. [Forat]

 

The MoI says it dismantled a carrigging gang in Mosul. The gang, composed of 6 persons, was based in the industrial neighborhood in west Mosul. They used to steal cars were left behind after war operations against Daesh. They would disassemble​​ the​​ cars and change their chassis and engine numbers. [BasNews]​​ 

 

Southern Ninewa

Hatra

The Directorate of Military Intelligence said it arrested​​ a​​ Daesh security officer in Hatra, saying he was also​​ among the “most dangerous”​​ perpetrators​​ of the Camp Speicher massacre.​​ [Sumaria]​​ 

 

KURDISTAN​​ NEWS

ERBIL

Dindar Zebari, the coordinator of international relations for the KRG, described​​ the recent Human Rights Watch (HRW) report, which alleged that Kurdish authorities are torturing children to admit their Daesh affiliation, as lacking in both objectivity and impartiality. [Rudaw]

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

No reports

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Foreign policy

United States

The US is pressuring its​​ European allies to commit​​ by Friday​​ to a US proposal to “stabilize” northeastern Syria, according to US officials, without specifying the details of the plan. [WSJ]

 

The US said that the conclusions of the​​ Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical​​ Weapons​​ (OPCW)​​ investigation committee confirm the role of the Syrian government in the chlorine attack in eastern Ghouta in 2018. The US said that the violators should be held accountable. [EnabBaladi]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

General​​ Joseph Votel, the Commander of CENTCOM, says Daesh fighters leaving Al-Baghouz are still radicals, and that elimination of Daesh is still a far-reaching goal. He noted that most of them did not say that they regretted joining Daesh. [Sumaria]​​ [AFP]

 

According to​​ BBC Arabic, Hayat Boumediene, known as “the most wanted woman in France,” was killed in a Coalition airstrike in Al-Baghouz. She allegedly participated in the 2015 Paris attacks that left 130 people dead. [Sumaria]

 

Northwest

Afrin

An explosion on Taranda village road in Afrin killed a Turkish soldier and wounded​​ 2​​ others. [Hawar]

 

Northeast​​ 

Raqqa

East​​ Raqqa​​ 

Daesh said on Thursday that it wounded the SDF security official of the Al-Karama area, along with one of his associates, and damaged their vehicle with an IED. [ICDNMar7-Telegram]​​ 

 

Central and West​​ 

Idlib

The SOHR reported 3 airstrikes on Saraqib, southeast of Idlib city, which wounded a woman and a child. Syrian Army troops are also shelling the northwest Hama and​​ northern​​ Latakia. [SyriaHR]

 

Homs

The SOHR said that​​ a​​ commander​​ for​​ the Maghawir Al-Thawra militia, which is backed by the Coalition, was wounded following an attack believed to be by Daesh on his car near Al-Tanaf. [SyriaHR]

Deir Ez-Zor 24​​ also reported that Daesh fired rockets that blew up a vehicle near Al-Tanaf military base on Thursday. The explosion injured Muhannad Al-Tila’, the Maghawir Al-Thawra leader, who was in a second vehicle, near the one that exploded. [ElDorar]

 

East (Deir Ez-Zor)

Albu Kamal​​ District

Over 3,000 Daesh​​ fighters​​ and their families handed themselves over to the SDF in Al-Baghouz. A Belgian Daesh wife said that the Islamic State is in their hearts, and​​ that​​ there are over 1,000 fighters still in​​ Al-Baghouz.​​ She added, “We will raise a new generation of​​ mujahideen​​ to continue the battle.​​ [Rudaw]​​ 

 

Escapees from​​ Al-Baghouz said that​​ the smell of dead bodies is all over the place,​​ and that the​​ people under siege were drinking​​ water​​ directly from the Euphrates​​ River and living​​ on herbs. US and SDF soldiers were searching men standing in long queues. Most men were from Asian and Russian nationalities,​​ with long beards. Civilians are​​ being​​ taken to​​ the​​ Al-Hawl​​ IDP and refugee​​ camp in Hasaka,​​ while Daesh members are​​ being​​ taken to specialized detention camps. [Sumaria]​​ 

 

The​​ AP​​ wrote that “dozens” of fighting-age men who were suspected of being Daesh members surrendered on Thursday, after which they were separated into groups of Syrians, Iraqis, and other nationalities. The suspected fighters were then searched and interrogated by both SDF fighters and Coalition troops. [AP]

 

The​​ SOHR said that the​​ SDF is still clearing mined areas in​​ Al-Baghouz,​​ and that​​ some Daesh fighters are still fortifying to fight till the end. It also said​​ that a new group of civilians and Daesh fighters​​ was expected to depart Daesh-held​​ areas on Thursday. 17,480​​ people,​​ including 2,040 fighters​​ have​​ left the area since February​​ 16. [SyriaHR]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ 17,480!​​ The world’s journalists missed this story as it was happening. As Daesh kept losing territory and retreating, their wives and children and other Daesh civilians retreated with them, until everybody was squeezed into the Al-Baghouz area, a place much too small. Now, with no place left to go and bombs falling, they are surrendering to save their lives. A large percentage are not innocent people, however, and once the immediate crisis is over, there will be an enormous problem over how to manage, feed,​​ process, transport, and apply justice to​​ all those people.

 

A source within the SDF said on Thursday that battles against Daesh in Al-Baghouz have been sporadic, due to the evacuation of civilians and the continued surrender of Daesh fighters. [BasNews]

 

An SDF source said on Wednesday that a Yazidi woman and 14 Yazidi children had been freed from Al-Baghouz. They were kidnapped from Sinjar by Daesh in 2014. [BasNews]​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Thursday that SDF units in the Al-Baghouz area freed 18 children, including 16 Yazidis and 2 Shia​​ from Tal Afar, who had been kidnapped by Daesh.

DaeshDaily comment.​​ While Daesh atrocities against the Yazidis are well documented, it also kidnapped many Shia women and children,​​ especially​​ Shia Turkmen women from Tal Afar.

 

South​​ 

No reports

 

OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS

 

Neighboring countries

Saudi Arabia

A statement by 36 nations in the​​ UN Human Rights Council condemned Saudi Arabia’s “continuing arrests and arbitrary detentions of human rights defenders.” The statement referred specifically to the treatment of Saudi women’s rights activists. [NYT]

 

North Africa

Egypt

The Egyptian MoI said that a gunfight between security personnel and a group of terrorists left 7 terrorists killed and 1 Egyptian officer wounded. The incident took place in Giza,​​ just​​ west of Cairo. [Hawar]

 

An Egyptian military spokesperson said on Thursday that​​ counter-terrorism​​ personnel in northern Sinai, in coordination with military engineers, found and destroyed 9 tunnels on the northern Sinai border strip.​​ [AhlMisr]

 

REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES

 

EUROPE

Great Britain

The​​ Mirror​​ reported​​ that a 27-year-old UK Daesh operative was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment for planning to attack Oxford​​ Street and kill over 100 shoppers. The man published a series of videos threatening to carry out the terrorist operation, referring to himself as “Ghost” and “Eagle.” [BasNews]

 

Germany

The German newspaper​​ Bild​​ wrote that German authorities ignored thousands of reports of the presence of war criminals among asylum seekers, due to the large flow of refugees into the country. [ElDorar]

 

AFRICA

Somalia

A website affiliated with Al-Shabab claimed that a vehicle bomb in Mogadishu killed 5 and wounded 10 others. The attack reportedly took place on the road leading to the presidential palace. [Rudaw]​​ 

 

Nigeria

Daesh said on Thursday that it killed one soldier and stole weapons​​ and ammunition when it attacked a Nigerian Army checkpoint in Damboa town, in Borno State, with machine guns. [ICDNMar7-Telegram]

 

ASIA

Afghanistan

At least​​ 3​​ people were killed and 19 others wounded in mortar attacks​​ in Kabul​​ targeting​​ a gathering of hundreds of people marking the 24th​​ anniversary​​ of the death of​​ Abdul Ali Mazari, leader of the Hezb-e Wahdat party.​​ Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, former​​ President Hamid Karzai, former National Security Advisor​​ Hanif​​ Atmar, former Vice​​ President Yunus Qanuni, Acting Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani, Second Deputy Chief Executive Mohammed Mohaqiq, and other officials were at the ceremony. No high-ranking official was hurt in the attack. But sources said that Abdul Latif Pedram, a presidential candidate and head of the National Congress Party of Afghanistan,​​ sustained injuries in the attack.​​ In a statement later,​​ President Ghani condemned the attack and called it “a criminal act”.​​ A spokesman for​​ the​​ Interior Ministry said​​ that​​ 1​​ suspect was arrested. [TOLONews]

Officials from the Ministry of Public Health said later that 3 people had died and 22 others had been injured in the attack. [Khaama]

Daesh’s version​​ said on Thursday it killed or wounded more than 30 people when it targeted​​ a Shia gathering​​ with 62 mortar shells and 15 rockets, attended by former Afghan President Hamid Karzai, senior government officials, and parliament members, in District 6, in Kabul city. Daesh also said 2 of its terrorists clashed with security personnel at the gathering,​​ using machine guns. [ICDNMar7-Telegram]

 

The Afghan MoI said on Wednesday that a “prominent” leader of the Haqqani network, Mullah Mirwais, had been arrested in Jalalabad, Nangarhar Province, eastern Afghanistan. [Khaama]

 

India/Kashmir

Indian police said that 1 civilian was killed and 32 wounded​​ by a hand grenade attack​​ in​​ a bus station in Jammu city,​​ in the Indian part of Kashmir. The attacker is​​ reportedly​​ a radical Indian​​ jihadi​​ who was​​ previously​​ arrested before​​ fleeing to Kashmir. [Sumaria]

 

DAESH MEDIA

On Thursday,​​ Daesh published​​ the 178th​​ issue of its​​ Naba​​ magazine. In this issue, Daesh published​​ the usual​​ infographic about its attacks in Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Tunisia, Somalia, west Africa, Pakistan, and Afghanistan during the last week. It claimed it conducted 44 attacks, killing or wounding 156 people and destroying 13 vehicles.​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Of course,​​ Daesh didn’t mention Al-Baghouz.​​ 

 

 

*****

 

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