An Update On ISIS Activities

August 29, 2018

 

Sinjar

 

 

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

Daesh faces up to new circumstances, reorganizes. [..]

Daesh car bomb in Al-Qa’im leaves 7 soldiers dead, 9 wounded. [..]

Salahuddin Provincial Council fires the Police Chief. [..]

Daesh kills 2 more mukhtars, in northern Diyala &​​ Mosul District.​​ [..]

Arab families’ return to Sinjar raises Yazidi security issues.​​ [..]

 

Syria

Guterres has “grave concern” over possible humanitarian disaster in Idlib. [..]

Israel’s intelligence chief renews threats against Iranian troops in Syria. [..]

Islamic opposition militias​​ in Idlib​​ maneuver in anticipation of Syrian attack. [..]

Daesh attack in Homs kills or wounds 20 Syrian soldiers. [..]

 

Other​​ countries

Egypt: ​​​​ Egyptian Army kills 20 militants in broad Sinai campaign. [..]

 

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

New​​ government

An “informed source” in the Al-Fath (Conquest) alliance says that a “vital” meeting will be held in Hadi Al-Amiri’s house on Wednesday, which will include figures from the Rule of Law and Victory alliances, and the Sunni and Kurdish parties. The meeting is aimed at announcing the formation of the largest bloc in the CoR. [BasNews]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

Agence France Press​​ says that Daesh is regrouping in an attempt to survive, following the loss of major cities in Iraq and Syria. It says that the group has changed its administrative structure after the reduction of Daesh-designated “provinces” (wilayat) it held from 35 to 6, which include Somalia, Sinai, East Asia, and Tajikistan. The group is not using the term “state” any more, and returned to​​ the​​ old designation of Iraq and Syria as​​ wilayat. The group’s global presence is now mainly in Western countries, while its new discourse is rather similar to that of Al-Qaeda in the past few years. [Baghdadia]​​ 

 

BAGHDAD

North​​ (Tarmiya, Taji, etc.)​​ 

The Center for Security Information said on Wednesday that CTS units, backed by intelligence personnel, arrested a Daesh terrorist who was charged with several crimes against civilians in Tarmiya. [Ghad]​​ 

 

West​​ (Mansour, Abu Ghraib, etc.)

Baghdad Ops Command says that police units arrested 3 wanted persons, 1 of them wanted for terrorism charges, in Ameriya and Ghazaliya. [Ghad]​​ 

 

ANBAR

The Anbar Criminal Court sentenced 3 Daesh operatives to death, says Abd Al-Sattar Birqdar, spokesman for the Higher Judicial Council. The 3 participated in armed attacks that caused military and civilian casualties in Anbar. [Baghdadia]​​ 

 

Falluja

Intelligence units arrested a man wanted on terrorism charges who was hiding among civilians in Qarma​​ subdistrict in​​ Falluja​​ District. [Ghad]​​ 

 

Hit

Press reports say that an Iraqi Army unit found 2 IEDS near the Al-Bakr​​ area,​​ near​​ the​​ Hit desert. Both IEDs were destroyed on site. [Mawazin]

In a report presumably on the same event, the Center for Security Information said later on Wednesday that detachments from the Military Intelligence Directorate had found an explosives and equipment cache in the Al-Bakr area. The cache included 750 120mm mortar shells, 600 bases for “Katyusha” rockets, 500 kg of “C4,” 150 IEDs, and 5 20-liter containers of ammonium nitrate. The explosives were detonated on site.​​ [Ghad]​​ 

 

Al-Qa’im

A car bomb attacked an Army & PMF​​ checkpoint in Al-Qa’im. A security source says that the casualties from the attack have​​ increased from initial reports to​​ seven​​ killed and​​ nine​​ wounded, most of whom were soldiers. [Baghdadia]​​ 

Daesh claimed responsibility for the car bomb attack in Al-Qa’im, at the southern entrance to the city. [PUKMedia]

 

SALAHUDDIN

Shirqat

Daesh said on Tuesday it killed a PMF member, wounded three others, and damaged their SUV with an IED in Shaqra village in Shirqat. [A3maq]

Tikrit

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source says the Salahuddin Provincial Council unanimously passed a vote to fire the Salahuddin Police Chief, General Qandil Al-Jubouri, after accusing him of not preparing local police to stop Daesh attacks and not implementing arrest warrants against Daesh members. The source says the council assigned​​ General Sabah Al-Bayati as acting​​ Police​​ Chief.​​ 

 

DIYALA

Central Diyala (Muqdadiya/Abu Saida)

A security source in Diyala Province said on Wednesday that a member of the security services had been killed by an IED in the Mukhaisa area. [Ghad]

 

Daesh said on Tuesday it killed a tribal PMF member and wounded three others with an IED in the Harouniya area in Muqdadiya. [A3maq] [ICDNAug28]

 

Northern Diyala (Kifri, Khanaqin,​​ Khalis​​ north)

Daesh said on Tuesday it killed the mukhtar of Bahiza village, in Jalawla. [A3maq]

 

Daesh said on Tuesday it killed an Iraqi soldier with an IED near the Ghaziya Power Station, in the Mansouriya subdistrict of Al-Khalis District in northeast Diyala. [A3maq]

 

In the same area, Daesh said on Tuesday it targeted an Iraqi Army military position in Shirween with mortars. [ICDNAug28]

 

KIRKUK

Hawija (Riyadh,​​ Al-Zab,​​ etc.)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source says a PMF fighter was killed, three others wounded, and their pickup vehicle destroyed when a roadside IED exploded on their vehicle between Hawija city and Barima village to the east.

 

Daesh said on Tuesday it set on fire the houses of three tribal PMF members in Hay Al-Saraj, in Hawija. [ICDNAug28]

 

NINEWA

Makhmur

A Peshmerga officer in Gwer​​ subdistrict in Makhmur, Sirwan Barzani, said on Wednesday that his units had killed 11 Daesh fighters near the Makhmur border through artillery and mortar shelling. Coalition planes were seen in the skies around the areas. [Rudaw]

 

Mosul​​ city

Ministry of the Interior spokesman Sa’ad Ma’an says that​​ Rapid​​ Response units arrested 11 Daesh operatives in the Al-Islah Al-Zira’i neighborhood, east Mosul.​​ One​​ of the arrestees was a collector of fees and taxes for Daesh during their control of the city. [Etejah]​​ 

 

Mosul District

South (Hammam Al-Alil/Shura)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source says a group of Daesh terrorists killed the mukhtar of Khuwain village, southwest​​ of​​ Mosul, west of Jarn​​ in Hammam Al-Alil, along with​​ his two sons, one of them a child, and two daughters,​​ in their house. The source said the terrorists were not masked. ​​ 

 

Western​​ Ninewa

Sinjar

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Tuesday that Iraqi Army 16th​​ division gave permission to 1,800 families from Arab tribes to return to their houses in Kawlawat village​​ (spelling approx.), in Sinjar. The source said the families returned after PMFs withdrew and Iraqi Army troops took over the area. The source said Yazidi PMFs demanded that the tribes not be allowed to return unless they hand over Daesh members from the tribes.  ​​ ​​​​ 

 

Southern Ninewa​​ (No reports)

 

KURDISTAN​​ NEWS

(No reports)

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

Military & security developments

The PYD says that it killed 15 Turkish soldiers in the Bakur and Bashur areas, in southeast Turkey. [Hawar]

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS

United Nations

UN Secretary-General António Guterres expressed “grave concern” on Wednesday regarding a potential humanitarian disaster in Idlib. He called on the Syrian regime to exercise restraint and protect civilians. [Rudaw]

 

Russia

On Wednesday, the​​ Telegraph​​ reported that Russia had built up a strong military presence in the Mediterranean Sea to support Assad’s attack on Idlib and prevent the US from attacking Assad in case he decides to use chemical weapons. It said that Russia mobilized 10 warships and 2 submarines, which is the biggest Russian military mobilization in Syria since 2015. [Dorar]

 

Foreign policy

Israel

Israel renewed its threat to bomb Iranian and Syrian targets in Syria, saying that it would not allow an Iranian military presence in Syria. Yisrael Katz, the Israeli Intelligence Minister, says that the recent Iranian- Syrian military agreement is a big test of Israel. “We will strike Iranian targets, and if Syrian air defense intercepts, we will strike it as well,” Katz says. [Qasioun]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

The SOHR reported that Daesh committed 41 executions​​ between July 29 and August 29 in Suwayda, Deir Ez-Zor, and Idlib, among them 4 Syrian Army​​ soldiers​​ and 15 opposition and Tahrir Al-Sham fighters. The total number executed by Daesh during the 50 months of its rule in Syria comes to 5,408​​ since the announcement of its “caliphate.​​ Daesh is currently estimated to control only 1.6% of Syrian territory. [SyriaHR]

 

The International Coalition reports that it​​ does​​ not​​ intend​​ to impose a no-fly zone in northern Syria (in response to incorrect reports that it would). [Dorar]

 

Northwest

Afrin

On Wednesday,​​ ANHA​​ received a report​​ of​​ violent clashes between the 9th​​ Squad and a group called Sultan Muhammad Al-Fatah (both of whom work for the Turkish military) in the city of Afrin, which left an unspecified number dead and wounded. [Hawar]

 

Local sources said that 4 civilians had been wounded by an IED explosion in the​​ Afrin​​ city on Wednesday evening.​​ Hawar​​ wrote that it was a car bombing.​​ [Rudaw]​​ [Hawar]

 

Jarabulus

The SOHR reported a “fierce” IED explosion in Jarabulus. A similar explosion was reported 2 weeks ago in these areas, which are held by pro-Turkey militias. [SyriaHR]

 

Northeast​​ 

Hasaka

Daesh said it shot and killed two SDF members Monday in Dashisha village, recently captured from Daesh by the SDF. [A3maq]

 

Raqqa

Raqqa city​​ & district

An IED explosion hit an SDF military vehicle on a bridge between the​​ villages​​ of​​ Adnaniya and Al-Rafiqa​​ northwest​​ of​​ Raqqa​​ city, on Tuesday, and killed and wounded several of its fighters. [Qasioun]​​ 

 

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

According to the government-affiliated Anadolu news service, the PYD released 40 Daesh prisoners from its prisons in the north of Syria in exchange for​​ a​​ large amount of money, amounting to hundreds of thousands of dollars. The prisoners were released from Tal Abyad before heading to unidentified destinations. [Anadolu]​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ The biased source somewhat undermines the credibility of the report.

 

Central and West​​ 

Idlib/Aleppo

 

Also see stories above under “National News”

 

Various areas of Idlib are witnessing a wave of arrests, the SOHR reported. Opposition militias are arresting men on charges of contacting the Syrian government or Daesh. 35 people were arrested for government ties, and 7 for Daesh connections, by Tahrir Al-Sham. [SyriaHR]

 

The National Liberation Front (opposition) arrested several persons in Idlib on charges of calling for reconciliation with the Syrian government. 30 persons were arrested in 6 villages. Such arrests are often made by the Front and by Tahrir Al-Sham. [Qasioun]

 

The National Liberation Front in Idlib says that it ambushed a group of Syrian troops in Rashideen, western Aleppo city. Earlier, the front killed 3 soldiers and wounded several others in​​ search operations around Rashideen. [Qasioun]

 

Homs

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Tuesday that 20 government​​ soldiers​​ were killed or wounded and several others captured in a Daesh attack on a military convoy near Wadi Al-Naqib, east of Homs.​​ 

 

East (Deir Ez-Zor)

Deir Ez-Zor​​ District

A motorcycle bomb explosion targeted an SDF vehicle in Al-Sawh village​​ west of​​ Deir Ez-Zor​​ city, most likely a​​ Daesh​​ revenge operation. [SyriaHR]

 

Albu Kamal​​ District

The SOHR reported battles between the SDF and Daesh near Bir Al-Azraq, near the Al-Tanak oil field, following a Daesh attack. Coalition planes supported the SDF in the fighting on Tuesday. [SyriaHR]

 

The SOHR reported that several trucks carrying food entered into Daesh-held areas in Hajin, east of the Euphrates. The trucks came through Al-Sha’afa, crossing from SDF-held areas. It also reported that the Coalition had moved one of its mobile bases to a new location, closer to Hajin, in anticipation of a major attack on the area. [SyriaHR]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source says a Kata’eb Hezbollah (Iraq) brigade arrived at the Albu Kamal preparing to support government forces in their upcoming attack on​​ Al-Susah.​​ 

 

South​​ 

Suwayda

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said o Tuesday that 12 government​​ soldiers​​ were killed and others wounded in a Daesh ambush in the Tilul Al-Safa area, east of Suwayda. The source said Daesh also captured 3 vehicles in the attack.

On Wednesday, the source said that government​​ troops​​ killed 2 Daesh members and captured 2 others in the same area.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Tuesday that 4 pro-government Druze fighters were killed in a Daesh attack east of Suwayda. The source said that Druze fighters had killed 2 Daesh terrorists after trapping them in a deserted house.​​ 

 

OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS

 

North Africa

Egypt

The Egyptian Army announced that they had killed 20 extremist fighters in the “Sinai 2018” campaign, announced last February. The 20 were killed in various areas of the peninsula. [Anadolu]

 

Daesh said it killed or wounded three Egyptian security members, including an officer, in an attack on Arish city, on Monday. [A3maq]

 

Daesh said it destroyed an Egyptian Army Humvee with an IED near Hay Al-Safa, south of Arish, on Monday. [A3maq]

Daesh said it destroyed an Egyptian Army ambulance with an IED, south of Arish, on Monday. [A3maq]

 

Libya

The Benghazi Security Directorate announced on Tuesday via its Facebook page that units from the Al-Saberi Police Station had seized an arms cache which included 11 Kalashnikov rifles.​​ [Wasat]

 

REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES

 

AFRICA

Somalia

AFRICOM​​ announced on Wednesday that it had killed 3 militants​​ from​​ Al-Shabab. [Anadolu]

 

ASIA

Afghanistan

Afghani security authorities arrested 4 Daesh members in Kabul on Wednesday. The Afghani authorities made a statement saying that the 4 worked as taxi drivers to transfer​​ weapons and move​​ Daesh​​ members between the capital and the provinces. [Ghad]

 

Daesh said it killed a Taliban member with an IED in Watapur in Kunar, on Monday. [A3maq]

 

Philippines

Daesh said on Tuesday it killed Philippine soldiers with an IED in a village in Sultan Kudarat, in Mindanao. [A3maq]​​ 

 

DAESH MEDIA

 

Daesh published on Tuesday a photo of one of its Palestinian terrorists, saying that he was killed in Sinai. [ICDNAug28]

 

 

*****

 

READER COMMENTS WELCOME

You are invited to add information to or comment on any Daesh Daily story.​​ 

 

 

August 28, 2018

 

Old Mosul

 

 

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

McGurk trying to broker an emergency interim government in Baghdad.​​ [..]

Al-Abadi reaches agreement with Germany’s Siemens firm to develop Iraq electricity sector. [..]

Iraqi security expert estimates Daesh remainder at 2,000 men, working from tunnels.​​ [..]

Iraq will seek relief from US Iran sanctions that are hurting Iraq too. [..]

First stores, medical clinics since liberation are opened in Mosul Old City.​​ [..]

Daesh members who killed 300 IHEC employees in Mosul confess guilt. [..]

Return of Arab families to Sinjar causes concern to Yazidis, Peshmerga.​​ [..]

 

Syria

Mattis says the goal in Syria is to allow Syrians to choose a new leader.​​ [..]

UN-hosted multilateral talks on Syria to start September 14 in Geneva.​​ [..]

SDF negotiating with Daesh over possible Daesh withdrawal from Hajin. [..]

SOHR says 194 Daesh, 61 government troops killed in Suwayda fighting. [..]

 

Other​​ countries

Saudi Arabia:​​ Pentagon pressuring Saudis over civilian deaths in Yemen. [..]

 

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

New​​ government

Political sources say that US Envoy Brett McGurk is currently in Baghdad and working on the formation of a “national salvation government,” supposedly headed by Haider Al-Abadi. The sources say that McGurk told several Iraqi politicians about it in secret meetings at the Embassy, saying that he proposed a 2-year emergency government. Such a government would lead the country until the next elections in 2020. [Ghad]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ This report suggests that the US does not believe a broad-based majority coalition will be constructed from the current political situation, and is hoping that an interim two-year government can get enough support to produce a parliamentary majority​​ and get the political process moving again.​​ The next CoR election would not normally be held until 2022, however.

 

McGurk​​ and Nechirvan Barzani, the​​ KRG Prime Minister, discussed the​​ formation of the​​ new Iraqi government and​​ the​​ negotiations between Kurdistan and Baghdad on the issue.​​ The meetings were attended by US​​ Ambassador Douglas Silliman.​​ [BasNews]

 

Press reports say​​ that the​​ US and Saudi Arabia might cut off​​ diplomatic relations with Iraq if​​ Al-Abadi, Hakim, and Sadr fail to form the largest bloc. The​​ opposing coalition​​ has selected Nouri Al-Maliki as​​ its​​ prime minister​​ nominee​​ and granted freedom to the Sunni​​ “National​​ Axis​​ to select whoever they want to the post​​ of Speaker of the CoR. [SkyPress]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ We do not take this story from unattributed sources seriously.

 

The Iraqi Turkmen Front said on Tuesday that it would ally itself with any political coalition that rejected the conditions of the Kurds regarding the return of the Peshmerga to Kirkuk and the “disputed” areas. The leader of the Turkmen Front, Arshad Al-Salihi, said in a press statement that they had been meeting with the Al-Hikma (Wisdom), Victory, and Al-Fath (Conquest) alliances, among others. [Rudaw]

 

Qais Khazali, the Secretary-General of AAH,​​ part of the Al-Fath alliance,​​ says he​​ has​​ not interfered​​ in any decision concerning​​ the PMF​​ organization​​ since the victory over Daesh. He also says he would not tolerate US interference in the formation of the government. [Sumaria]

 

Reconstruction

PM Al-Abadi said that an agreement had been reached with German company Siemens to develop the electric sector in Iraq, with the goal of​​ reaching​​ 24-hour​​ electric service. Al-Abadi made the remarks during his weekly press conference. [Sumaria]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

Hisham Al-Hashimi, an Iraqi security expert, says Daesh operatives are present in 4 desert and mountain​​ locations—in Anbar, Salahuddin, Diyala, and Ninewa, using tunnels they dug during their control of the area. He says Daesh priorities are targeting the PMF, tribal fighters, and security forces, in that order. He estimated their total number at 2,000. [Petra]

 

Foreign policy

On Tuesday, Iraqi PM Haider Al-Abadi said that Iraq will send a delegation to the US to discuss financial transactions. Last week,​​ Reuters​​ reported that Al-Abadi said that he would ask Washington to relieve some of the sanctions on Iran because it was affecting Iraq’s economy, too. [Youm7]

 

BAGHDAD

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

Daesh said it killed or wounded five PMF members and destroyed their vehicle with an IED in Dora, on Sunday. [A3maq]

 

Southwest​​ (Rasheed, etc.)

A police source said on Tuesday that a civilian had been shot and killed by an unidentified attacker in Duwanim, southwest Baghdad. [Sumaria]

 

ANBAR

Falluja

Baghdad Ops Command​​ defused​​ 3 IEDs in Lihaib and Ma’amir. Other explosive materials and war detritus belonging to Daesh gangs were found. [SNG]

 

Ramadi

The Center for Security Information said on Tuesday that security personnel under Anbar Ops Command had found 55 IEDs consisting of 20-liter bins of glycerin containing C4 in the Al-Ankur​​ area just south of​​ Ramadi city.​​ In addition,​​ 33 explosive lighters and 8 other explosive devices were found during an operation around Lake Thirthar.​​ [Baghdadia]​​ 

 

SALAHUDDIN

Baiji

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source says a woman was severely wounded in a Daesh mortar shelling on the Albu Toma​​ village area in southern Baiji District.

 

The PMF says that it found an explosives cache during an inspection in the Siniya desert. The cache included 12 rockets, 15 IEDs, and 11 explosives containers. [FaceIraq]

 

DIYALA

Central Diyala (Muqdadiya/Abu Saida)

A security source says an IED explosion in Muqdadiya wounded 4 workers working in an orchard. [BaghdadPost]

 

KIRKUK

The Center for Security Information said on Tuesday that the Federal Police had destroyed 4 Daesh safehouses and arrested a suspect in Kirkuk Province. [Ghad]​​ 

 

Hawija (Riyadh,​​ Al-Zab,​​ etc.)

Daesh said on Monday it killed two IFP members, including an officer, wounded another, and damaged their vehicle with an IED near Gharib village, in Abbasi. [ICDNAug27]

 

The Governor of Kirkuk, Rakan Al-Jubouri, announced on Tuesday that 150 IDP families had returned from the Daquq IDP camp to their home areas in and around Hawija.​​ [Sumaria]​​ 

 

Southwest (Daquq, Rashad,​​ Taza,​​ etc.)

Daesh said it killed or wounded IFP members and damaged their vehicle with an IED near Bashir,​​ in Taza subdistrict,​​ on Sunday. [ICDNAug27]

 

NINEWA

Mosul​​ city

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source says a group of doctors and local merchants renovated and opened medical clinics and several shops in Old Mosul. The source says these are the first offices and shops opened in the old city since the liberation.

 

The Center for Security Information reported that Ninewa police arrested 11 Daesh members in west Mosul, including officers responsible for finances and the sale of livestock during the period of Daesh control of the city. [FaceIraq]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source says Ninewa SWAT units captured a Daesh member in Hay Sumer​​ in east Mosul​​ and confiscated a handgun and forged passports. The source sent us a photo of the captured man.

 

Mosul District

South (Hammam Al-Alil/Shura/Qayara)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source says the court​​ in​​ Hammam Al-Alil registered the confessions of 8 Daesh terrorists, including the Daesh official of public killings in west Mosul, who admitted committing many crimes including the killing of more than 300 employees​​ of the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC).

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Conceding that Daesh governance was a series of major crimes, the execution of the IHEC personnel was one of the​​ most heinous.​​ 

 

West (Hamidat/Muhalabiya)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source says Iraqi Army 20th​​ division units captured 2 Daesh terrorists in a house in Badoush and confiscated weapons and military uniforms from them. The source says the terrorists were carrying tribal PMF badges.​​ 

 

Western​​ Ninewa

Sinjar

55 Arab families from the​​ Juhaish​​ tribe returned to their homes in the Kolat area, near Mazar Sharafuddin, a sacred Yazidi shrine. This is in response to the PM’s orders for the Arab tribes to return to their areas in Sinjar,​​ including the northern​​ Rabi’a and Zummar​​ subdistricts, to the displeasure of​​ some​​ Yazidis. Peshmerga officials say that 55 families returned with​​ the support of​​ a large military force. The Yazidis say that the return of Arab​​ neighbors​​ will cause problems with the Yazidi population. [Rudaw]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ This has to be seen in context. The Yazidis brutalized by Daesh​​ were in many cases victimized by the betrayal of their own Arab neighbors. A lot of Yazidis died; thus the anxiety about the returnees.​​ However, the government needs the Arabs to return in order to solidify Baghdad’s shaky control of the province, whereas the Kurds’ efforts to control Sinjar would be served by a reduced government presence and fewer returning Arabs, which would give the Peshmerga more​​ latitude​​ to control the province.

 

Southern Ninewa​​ (No reports)

 

SOUTHERN IRAQ

Basra

The government’s media​​ office​​ says​​ that​​ PM Al-Abadi issued several orders regarding solutions for health and environmental​​ problems,​​ and delivering​​ clean water to Basra. The solutions were based on​​ the​​ recommendations of a committee formed by the​​ Council of Ministers, chaired by the​​ Minister of Health,​​ who​​ visited Basra on​​ Al-Abadi’s​​ orders. [Sumaria]

 

KURDISTAN​​ NEWS

(No reports)

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

Military & security developments

The Turkish state-run media outlet​​ Anadolu​​ reported on Tuesday that the Turkish Army had sent reinforcements from its special forces to the border with Syria. The report said that special forces units and armored vehicles were being redeployed to southern Turkey near Afrin. [BasNews]

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS

United Nations

Sergei Ryabkov, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister, announced the start of urgent consultations at the UN Security Council regarding Idlib in Syria. He says that “Al-Nusra” (i.e. Tahrir Al-Sham) will perform a false flag operation using chemical weapons, and will try to blame the Syrian government for it by using the White Helmets organization to accuse the government of committing the attack. [Dorar]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ As we recall, the Russians put out similar disinformation before​​ the​​ most recent​​ Syrian chemical attack, which fooled no one in the end. If that history is repeated, there will be a Syrian government chemical attack or other atrocity soon in Idlib.

 

At the UN Security Council meeting on Tuesday, Syrian Envoy to the UN,​​ Bashar Ja’afari,​​ picked up on the Russian theme. He​​ said that Al-Nusra is planning a chemical attack on Idlib, and that any aggression against the Syrian government under the pretext of using chemical weapons will support terrorists. [FaceIraq]

 

Russia

Vladimir Gutenev, the Deputy Chairman of​​ the Committee for​​ Economy​​ Policy,​​ Development, and Entrepreneurship​​ in the​​ Duma (Russian​​ Parliament),​​ proposed that​​ President Putin deploy​​ tactical​​ nuclear weapons outside Russia. He says​​ that since the​​ US​​ has crossed all red lines in its dealings​​ with Russia,​​ Russia could​​ respond by deploying tactical nuclear weapons in countries where​​ Russia has​​ protected​​ air​​ bases,​​ like Syria. [Dorar]

 

Foreign policy

United States

US Secretary of Defense James Mattis said on Tuesday that Bashar Al-Assad should not be part of any future solution to the crisis in Syria. He said that the goal is for the Syrian people to choose a new government that isn’t led by Al-Assad. [Qasioun]

 

The State Department announced that the US will take part in negotiations on Syria in Geneva hosted by the UN on September 14. The UN expects the UK, France, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Egypt to attend. [Dijlah]

 

Northwest​​ 

Azaz

The SOHR reported fighting between the Syrian Army and Islamist and opposition militias near the​​ town of​​ Bayanoun​​ in Azaz,​​ amid intense artillery shelling by the Syrian Army on the opposition fighters’ positions. [SyriaHR]​​ 

 

Jarabulus

Kurdish media reported that fighting broke out between different “mercenary” groups affiliated with the Turkish Army in Jarabulus. The leader of the Jabhat Al-Shamia​​ militia was reportedly arrested after being accused of belonging to a Daesh sleeper cell. [Hawar]

 

Northeast​​ 

Raqqa

Raqqa city​​ & district

Daesh said on Monday it killed or wounded seven SDF members and destroyed their vehicle with an IED near Al-Rasheed school, in Hay Al-Thakana, in Raqqa city. [A3maq]

 

Central and West​​ (No reports)

 

East (Deir Ez-Zor)

Deir Ez-Zor​​ District

The​​ SOHR reported​​ extensive​​ Daesh efforts to avenge its loss of villages and oilfields in Deir Ez-Zor by​​ initiating​​ assassination and rocket attacks on SDF fighters, as well as on​​ businessmen, coffee shops, and tobacco shops, as well as spreading IEDs wherever possible. [SyriaHR]

 

Daesh said it shot and killed an SDF member near the Abu Khashab village bridge on Saturday. [A3maq]

 

SOHR says SDF units are on full alert in the Al-Busayrah area, east of the Euphrates, to protect a potential meeting between local councils and dignitaries with US officials visiting the area. This comes as the SDF and the Coalition are preparing for a military attack on the town of Hajin and 4 surrounding villages in Albu Kamal District. [SyriaHR]​​ 

 

See related story below under Albu Kamal

 

Mayadin​​ District

Daesh said it shot and killed three SDF members in Al-Jardhi village, in Dhiban​​ subdistrict, on Saturday. [A3maq]

 

Albu Kamal​​ District

The SDF started negotiations with Daesh to withdraw its fighters from Hajin,​​ as a​​ US State Department delegation is​​ visiting the northern and western parts of the subdistrict. The negotiation caused intense​​ Coalition​​ artillery shelling of the city of Hajin to stop temporarily. Topics of discussion also include an exchange of prisoners, and allowing trucks to enter the town. [ZamanAlwasl]

 

The SOHR says that SDF artillery shelled Al-Sha’afa, Al-Susah, and Bu Badran near Hajin, causing damage. The shelling followed the arrival of Hummers and rocket-mounted trucks to the area,​​ still held by Daesh. [SyriaHR]

 

The SOHR reports that Daesh executed 3 of its​​ own​​ fighters in Hajin, on charges of “deviating from the right path.” [SyriaHR]

 

South​​ 

Rif Damashq​​ 

Suwayda

The SOHR says that fighting between Daesh and the Syrian Army is continuing in Tilul Al-Safa (Al-Safa Hills) in Rif Damashq, near the border with Suwayda. As the Army is advancing, 194 Daesh fighters have been killed since July 25,​​ and​​ 61 Syrian troops. ​​ [SyriaHR]

 

OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS

 

Neighboring countries

Saudi Arabia/Yemen

The Pentagon threatened Saudi Arabia to reduce military support following the Saudi attack on a bus​​ in Yemen​​ that left 40 children dead at the beginning of this month, says CNN. US top military officials are concerned that their support​​ for​​ the Saudis is​​ being​​ used against civilians in Yemen. [Arabi21]

 

North Africa

Egypt

Daesh said it stopped an Egyptian Army military campaign​​ east of Sheikh Zuweid, on Sunday, and damaged a bulldozer with an IED,​​ wounding several soldiers. It also said it killed two soldiers and wounded two others with an IED, and destroyed a vehicle with a third IED. [ICDNAug27]

 

Daesh published photos of its Saturday attack on government forces in the Kilo 17 area, west of Arish. [ICDNAug27]

 

Libya

News reports say that 5 were killed and 31 wounded following a gunfight between regiments affiliated with the Government of National Accord in Tripoli. The news was reported by a Libyan website. [Rudaw]

 

The security forces in Sirte, on the central coast,​​ increased their state of alert to “maximum” after monitoring Daesh movements 70 km​​ (43 miles)​​ south of Sirte. A member of the Sirte Protection and Demining Society said on Tuesday that members of Daesh had arrested a citizen the night before.​​ [Wasat]

 

REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES

 

AFRICA

Somalia

Daesh said on Monday that it shot and killed a Somali intelligence member and stole his weapon at an intersection in Mogadishu.​​ [ICDNAug27]​​ 

 

ASIA

Philippines

Daesh said on Monday it killed two Philippine soldiers and destroyed a Humvee with an IED in a village on Maguindanao. [A3maq]

 

 

READER COMMENTS WELCOME

 

You are invited to add information to or comment on any Daesh Daily story.​​ 

 

August 27, 2018

 

Senator John McCain, friend of Iraq

 

 

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

Al-Fath, Rule of Law, Sunni elements announce rival coalition for forming new government. [..]

Masoum sets September 3 for first meeting of new CoR. [..]

Cardinal Sako addresses return of Christians to Ninewa Plain. [..]

Former CoR member among 25 killed by two Daesh suicide terrorists in Shirqat. [..]

Daesh in Udhaim resorts to killing cows. [..]

IFP experiences multiple deadly incidents in Hawija. [..]

Coalition, Iraqi Army, Ninewa police bust Daesh underground operation in Shura. [..]

 

Syria

Human rights organization provides shocking totals of Assad executions. [..]

Coalition advisor says US likely to stay in Syria until Iran fully withdraws. [..]

Former President Carter proposes Syria peace deal, reconstruction not conditional on regime change. [..]

Macron says Syrian people should decide whether Assad stays or goes. [..]

Syrian Army gaining control in Suwayda. [..]

 

Other​​ countries

United States: ​​ Iraq advocate John McCain dies in Arizona. [..]

Afghanistan: ​​​​ Daesh leader in Afghanistan killed by US airstrike. [..]

 

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

New​​ government

The Al-Fath (Conquest) and Rule of Law alliances agreed to join with the Sunni “National Axis” bloc to form what would reportedly be the largest CoR bloc,​​ if the​​ Kurds​​ are​​ included. However, the report says​​ 
“The Kurds agreed to join on the basis of guarantees to restore the rights of the people of Kurdistan.”​​ 
​​ Nouri Al-Maliki will be nominated as a​​ Prime​​ Minister for​​ what would be his​​ 3rd​​ term. ​​ 

A​​ coalition of the Sairun,​​ Al-Nasr (Victory),​​ Al-Hikma (Wisdom), and Wataniya (National) alliances, claimed to have formed the “nucleus” of the largest CoR bloc last week. [Rudaw]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Thinking like a mathematician​​ (or maybe just a 3rd​​ grade math​​ level would be sufficient), a “nucleus” of a majority coalition is almost by definition not a majority coalition.​​ This statement is mostly posturing in pursuit of additional support that Conquest and Rule of Law have so far failed to secure. The Sunni parties seemed to be​​ mostly​​ with the​​ rival​​ coalition declared last week, so barring some surprise​​ development, the​​ “Sunni axis”​​ cited in this story​​ may not amount to much. As for the Kurds, they are hoping one side or the other will get desperate enough to make political concessions neither coalition favors.​​ The Kurds’ loaded statement is thus meaningless at this point.​​ Al-Maliki​​ made​​ similar​​ concessions​​ in 2010 to gain control but soon reneged, which is one reason the Kurdish parties​​ this “coalition” touts as potential supporters​​ thereafter​​ disdained him.​​ 

Now that the dueling press releases are over, the real negotiations may start.

 

Council of Representatives

President Fuad Masoum issued a decree calling the newly elected CoR to its first​​ meeting​​ on September 3. The session​​ will​​ be chaired by the oldest member until a​​ Speaker is elected. [Sumaria]

 

Reconstruction

Cardinal​​ Louis Sako, Patriarch of the Chaldean Catholic Church,​​ says​​ that the Church has​​ repaired a large number of damaged homes and​​ has​​ returned about 8,000 families to the Ninewa Plain. He​​ expressed the concern of Iraqi Christians regarding the future of Christian areas of Iraq and demographic changes.​​ He called for a national government to be formed without “external influences and sectarian quotas.” In that context, the Cardinal says it is not in the interests of Iraqi Christians to be “entrenched” in militias or other armed groups.​​ Sako said that in the post-Daesh period, there was an unclear vision of the future and a state of uncertainty both for Christians and for Iraqis in general. [BasNews]​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ It is important to mention that much of the home repair progress has been made possible European and American support. Two Catholic organizations particularly involved, among others, are Aid for the Church in Need, founded in Germany, and the Knights of Columbus in the US.

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

The Coalition said​​ it​​ had conducted​​ 6 airstrikes in Iraq between August 20 and August 26, in or near​​ Makhmur​​ and Mosul in Ninewa,​​ Rawa and​​ Rutba​​ in Anbar, Wadi Al-Shai​​ (Daquq),​​ and​​ the Jazeera​​ Samarra​​ desert. [InherentResolve]​​ [Shafaaq]

 

BAGHDAD

East​​ (Sadr City, New Baghdad, etc.)

A security source said on Monday that 2 people had been injured by a roadside IED that exploded in Al-Ghadeer,​​ in New Baghdad District,​​ east Baghdad. [Dijlah]

 

Southwest​​ (Rasheed, etc.)

A police source says that armed men shot and killed a civilian near his house in Radwaniya, in southwest Baghdad. [Sumaria]

 

ANBAR

Falluja

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Friday that National Security Service units captured a Daesh security commander responsible for killing many families that tried to escape Falluja city during the liberation battle. The source said the terrorist was carrying a PMF badge when he was captured in Hay Al-Jolan in Falluja city.​​ 

 

Daesh said on Sunday it destroyed a PMF vehicle with an IED in the Albu Jassem area, north of Falluja, killing or wounding the fighters inside.​​ [ICDNAug26]

 

Ramadi

Daesh said on Saturday it severely wounded a tribal PMF fighter using a silenced gun in Abu Taiban village in northwest Ramadi District, near Hit. [ICDNAug25]

 

Al-Qa’im

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Thursday that a PMF commander was killed and four other fighters wounded in a Daesh mortar​​ attack​​ on PMF units in the Al-Qa’im desert.​​ 

 

Rutba

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that four Border Guard members were killed in a Daesh ambush in the Nukhaib area in eastern Rutba.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that a Border Guard first lieutenant was killed when an IED exploded on his vehicle near the Jordanian border.​​ 

 

Daesh said it killed five Iraqi soldiers and destroyed their machine gun-mounted vehicle with an IED in the Kilo 130 area, on Friday. [A3maq]

 

SALAHUDDIN

Shirqat

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that 20 people were killed or wounded when a suicide terrorist blew himself up in Isdaira village. Among those killed was Eissa Abdulrazzaq, a media reporter.​​ 

The source said that another terrorist blew himself up in a group of tribal PMFs in the same village the same day, killing 4 fighters and wounding 5, including a local police major.​​ 

On Thursday, the source said, Adnan Ghanem Al-Jubouri, a former CoR member, died of wounds he sustained during the first attack.​​ 

 

Daesh said on Saturday it killed two Iraqi Army members and destroyed their fuel tanker truck with an IED on the road between Shirqat city and Tilul Al-Baj in western Shirqat. [A3maq]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Thursday that the mukhtar of Ramadhaniyat village in​​ western​​ Shirqat, on the Hatra border, was severely wounded when a sticky IED exploded under his vehicle.​​ 

 

Baiji

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that IFP and PMF units started a campaign to clear the Himrin Mountain area and killed 11 terrorists.​​ ​​ However, the source​​ also​​ said Daesh snipers killed four PMF fighters and two IFP members.​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ If we had a dollar for every report of a military campaign to clear some part of the Himrin area, we would be in a much higher income category. These forays kill many Daesh terrorists but never seem to gain control of the territory where​​ Daesh members​​ operate.

 

Samarra

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that a Saraya Al-Salam commander was killed and his driver wounded when a roadside IED exploded on their vehicle between Samarra city and the nearby village of Huwaish.​​ 

 

Southern Salahuddin​​ (Balad,​​ Dujail)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Thursday that an IFP lieutenant colonel was killed in a roadside IED explosion between Dujail and Tikrit. The source said the family of the victim has accused the AAH militia of planting the IED.​​ 

 

Eastern Salahuddin (Al-Daur, Tooz)

A security source says an IED targeting a PMF patrol killed 1 fighter and wounded 2 others in Amerli, in​​ Tooz. ​​ [Ghad]

 

Daesh said on Sunday that it killed a tribal PMF fighter, wounded two others, and destroyed their vehicle with an IED in Bir Ahmed village, southwest of Tuz Khurmatu, the district capital. [ICDNAug26]

 

A police source says that 2 armed men on a motorcycle shot and killed a civilian in the Ronaki neighborhood​​ of​​ Tuz Khurmatu. [Mawazin]

 

Daesh claimed on Sunday that it damaged an Iraqi Army vehicle with an IED near Tuz Khurmatu, killing or wounding the soldiers inside. [ICDNAug26]

 

DIYALA

Baquba/Southeast Diyala

Daesh said on Sunday it targeted “Iraqi Army positions” in Abu Qarma village in the Al-Waqf area northeast of Baquba and Mukhaisa village in Muqdadiya subdistrict with mortars. [ICDNAug26]

 

Central Diyala (Muqdadiya/Abu Saida)

 

See story just above; Mukhaisa is an orchard area just south of Abu Saida.

 

Northern Diyala (Kifri, Khanaqin,​​ Khalis​​ north)

Udhaim

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that 3 Badr fighters were killed and their pickup vehicle destroyed by an IED explosion near the Udhaim Dam. The attack happened as they were withdrawing from the area.​​ 

Daesh said it wounded Iraqi soldiers with an IED in the Albu Eissa area, in Udhaim, on Friday. [A3maq]

 

A local official in Diyala says that Daesh committed a “massacre” against cows near the border with Salahuddin. Mohammed Dhaifan Al-Obeidi, head of the Udhaim subdistrict, says that Daesh “executed” 21 cows near Albu Eissa village by shooting them in the head. [BaghdadToday]

 

Khanaqin

Daesh said it killed a PMF member in Sayed Adil village in Jalawla,​​ Khanaqin​​ on Friday. [A3maq]

 

Daesh said it wounded a Shi’i and damaged his vehicle with an IED in Zuhairiya village in Khanaqin, on Friday. [ICDNAug25]

 

Southern Diyala (Balad Ruz, Mandali)

Daesh said it shot and killed an Iraqi Army member in Humairat village, in Mandali, on Friday. [A3maq]

 

KIRKUK

Kirkuk

On Monday, a security source in Kirkuk reported that the IFP found the body of a Peshmerga​​ member​​ in northeast Kirkuk. The source (requesting anonymity) says that initial investigations show that the death​​ occurred because​​ he​​ lost control of his vehicle while​​ speeding through the subdistrict of​​ Qara Hanjir​​ in​​ northeastern Kirkuk. [Sumaria]

 

The Center for Security Information says that IFP and national intelligence units found a Daesh safehouse in the Qadisiya neighborhood of Kirkuk city. Several explosive belts and explosive materials, as well as rockets, were stored in the building.​​ [Ghad]​​ [Forat]​​ 

 

Hawija (Riyadh,​​ Al-Zab,​​ etc.)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that three IFP members were killed and their Humvee damaged by a roadside IED explosion near Hawija city

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Thursday that two IFP members, including a first lieutenant, were killed and two others wounded when a roadside IED exploded on their vehicle in the Maktab Khalid area​​ in Riyadh subdistrict.

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that after a battle between IFP units and a group of Daesh terrorists in Hawija desert, one of the terrorists, wounded, surrendered to the IFP. The source said the terrorist admitted he was responsible for blowing up electricity towers in the area.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that IFP units captured a Daesh commander near Kanaan (Dhirban) village, in Riyadh subdistrict. The source said the IFP found a Daesh safehouse and confiscated weapons and IEDs based on information obtained from the terrorist.​​ 

 

Daesh said on Sunday it set the house of a PMF “spy” in Awwad Al-Muhawesh village on fire, in Riyadh subdistrict. [ICDNAug26]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that a local police EOD officer was killed when an IED exploded on him, on the road between Riyadh and Sadouniya village. The source said this officer had dismantled thousands of IEDs since 2012.​​ 

 

Daesh said it killed three IFP EOD members and wounded two others with an IED in Al-Khazer village, in Al-Zab​​ subdistrict, on Saturday. [A3maq]

 

Southwest (Daquq, Rashad,​​ Taza,​​ etc.)

On Sunday, the PMF launched an operation​​ against​​ Daesh in​​ Rashad​​ subdistrict, based on information from the IFP.​​ The operation resulted in destroying 4 depots and seizing Daesh explosive and communication devices.​​ [PressIraq]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Friday that IFP units killed 4 Daesh terrorists and destroyed a vehicle bomb​​ during​​ a search in the Rashad desert.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that IFP units captured 5 Daesh terrorists who were hiding in a tunnel near Rashad.

 

NINEWA

Nineveh Plain (Hamdaniya, Tel Keif, Bashiqa)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that Ninewa SWAT and local police units captured 5 Daesh terrorists, including a commander, in a raid on Al-Salamiyah camp for displaced people in southeast Hamdaniya.

 

Mosul​​ city

In Mosul, 3 women were released from captivity and their captor was arrested by Ninewa Police. [Sumaria]

 

The Ninewa Investigations Court admitted the confessions of several Daesh operatives who were arrested​​ while​​ carrying over 276 pieces of Daesh golden currency. The pieces weighed​​ 4 grams​​ each, making the total over 1 kilogram of gold. They were aiming to sell the coins to fund Daesh, says Abd Al-Sattar Birqdar, spokesman of the Higher Judicial Council. [Baghdadia]​​ [Sumaria]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that Ninewa SWAT and local police units captured 3 Daesh members in Hay Al-Zahra, in east Mosul.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that Ninewa Police Emergency units captured a Daesh​​ hisbah​​ member in the Tis’in neighborhood in east Mosul, and captured 4 more terrorists in Hay Sumer.​​ 

Saad Maan, the spokesman of the Ministry of the Interior, reported officially that the 12th​​ Police Brigade arrested a Daesh operative who used to work for the​​ hisbah​​ (Daesh’s “Islamic Police”) office in Hay Tis’in. The 2nd​​ Battalion of the same Brigade arrested 4 other Daesh personnel in the Tis’in and Darkazliya neighborhoods of east Mosul.​​ [Buratha]​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Friday that National Security Service units captured an Ashbal Al-Khilafa (Cubs of the Caliphate) member in Hay Al-Islah, west Mosul, and confiscated a silenced gun from him. The source said the boy was responsible for killing many captured security members when Daesh was in charge of Mosul. The boy admitted he was a member of a Daesh cell in west Mosul. The source sent us photos of the boy (when he was with Daesh and after he was captured.)​​ 

 

On Monday, the Interior Ministry announced that an escaped​​ prisoner from Badoush​​ Prison who had been sentenced to 20 years was captured in the​​ Al-Mamoun neighborhood,​​ in​​ far southwest​​ Mosul. [Sumaria]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that a PMF security member was shot and killed by armed men on a motorcycle in Wadi Hajar in southwest Mosul, northeast of Al-Mamoun.​​ 

 

Mosul District

South (Hammam Al-Alil/Shura/Qayara)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that Ninewa SWAT units and Ninewa Operation Command units, supported by Coalition planes, found a Daesh tunnel in a search near Umm Al-Muhajir village in Shura, and confiscated weapons and food supplies. The source says the Coalition destroyed a Daesh pickup vehicle in the same area, killing 8 terrorists.​​ 

In an apparent official report of the same incidents, Ninewa Police reported killing​​ 10 Daesh fighters and blocking a 4.3 mile long cave south​​ of​​ Mosul, which had been used as a Daesh refuge, with the support of the Coalition. [SotIraq]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that Iraqi Army 20th division units captured a Daesh terrorist who was planting IEDs in the Shura area. ​​ 

 

West (Hamidat/Muhalabiya)

Daesh said it killed two Iraqi Army soldiers, wounded another, and destroyed 2 vehicles with 2 IEDs near Aski Mosul intersection, in Hamidat just west of Mosul, on Thursday. [ICDNAug25]

In another report, Daesh claims it destroyed 3 vehicles with 3 IEDs. [ICDNAug26]

 

Western​​ Ninewa​​ (No reports)

 

Southern Ninewa

Hatra

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Friday that 4 Kata’eb Hezbollah members were killed and their vehicle destroyed by an IED explosion near Shayhan village, south of Hatra​​ city.​​ 

 

The source also said that the KH has started withdrawing from villages south of Hatra towards Baiji and handing over their positions to Border Guards.

DaeshDaily comment.​​ We confess to some confusion here, as Hatra is not an Iraqi border location, but this was the report.

 

The Iraqi Ministry of Defense said on Monday that the 3rd​​ Regiment of the 75th​​ Infantry, 16th​​ Brigade, had carried out a search operation in Hatra. [Rudaw]

 

Baaj

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Tuesday that a media reporter was killed and another wounded when an IED exploded on their vehicle near Tal Safouk.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that two Shammar​​ Tribal​​ PMF fighters were killed in a Daesh attack on their military position near Tal Safouk.

DaeshDaily comment.​​ The locations of the incidents keep changing, but members of the Shammar tribe appear to be getting targeted​​ recently​​ by Daesh.

 

KURDISTAN​​ NEWS

(No reports)

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

Political developments

President Erdogan said on Sunday that Turkey would “bring peace and safety” to Iraq and to areas of Syria not currently under Turkish control, and said that terrorist organizations in those areas would be eliminated. Erdogan was speaking at an event to mark the anniversary of the Battle of Manzikert in 1071, part of the wars between the Byzantine and Seljuk Empires. Erdogan said that “the only places in Syria where security and peace have been established are under Turkey’s control,” and emphasized the role of Anatolia as a bulwark of civilization. [Yahoo]

DaeshDaily comments.​​ Erdogan’s public statements are frightening to the extent that one takes them seriously. Unfortunately, he is not always bluffing.

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Political opposition

The opposition Syrian Network for Human Rights says that the Syrian government​​ has​​ admitted to the deaths of 863 persons who​​ have​​ disappeared. They claim, however,​​ that​​ Syria has​​ forcibly​​ disappeared​​ 82,000 prisoners, and that 14,000 of them​​ were​​ killed under torture. They also said that of the names recorded by the government as “dead,”​​ most​​ were political​​ prisoners. ​​ [Anadolu]

 

Political sources say that the autonomous administration of the PYD will hand over some of the oilfields in northeast Syria to the government, in exchange for granting Syrian nationality to​​ some​​ Kurds. [Arabi21]​​ 

 

Foreign policy

Russia/Iran

The Saudi newspaper​​ Okaz​​ said on Monday that the Iranian Minister of Defense, Amir Hatami, had made a surprise visit to Damascus.​​ Okaz​​ wrote that “informed sources” said that the reason for his visit was to clarify Assad’s position regarding a US-Russian “understanding” on expelling militias from Deir Ez-Zor. They wrote that Hatami’s visit was also intended to smooth over tensions arising from alleged fighting between Lebanese Hezbollah units and Syrian Army units in rural Deir Ez-Zor. [Dorar]

 

“Informed sources” said on Monday that the US and Russia have​​ a “surprise”​​ in​​ their “near-understanding” regarding Deir Ez-Zor. The Saudi newspaper​​ Okaz​​ reported these sources as saying that Russia would withdraw from Deir Ez-Zor, which would put Iran in direct contact with US forces on the opposite bank of the Euphrates. The sources added that the “new American strategy” was to deter Iranian movements via air control​​ over​​ areas​​ west of the Euphrates​​ held by Iran and Lebanese Hezbollah. [Dorar]​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Both the vague “sources” and the Saudi origin of the story suggest waiting for corroboration. Most of the Russians in Deir Ez-Zor have been previously identified as Russian mercenaries.

 

United States

William Roebuck,​​ a​​ US advisor to the Coalition, said on Monday that the Coalition forces would remain in Syria until Daesh had suffered a “crushing defeat” and until Iranian forces had fully withdrawn from Syria. Roebuck said that​​ President​​ Trump’s goal was for Iran to completely withdraw from Syria. [BasNews]

 

Former President Jimmy Carter wrote an op-ed for the​​ New York Times​​ on Friday, advocating for a peace agreement in Syria that would not be conditional on regime change. He added that Western countries should help fund reconstruction, and that economic sanctions on Syria must be lifted in order for reconstruction to be effective. [NYTimes]

 

Europe

French President Emmanuel Macron says that it’s up to the Syrian people to decide on whether Assad stays in power. He says that keeping him there is a big mistake, but that “our main enemy in Syria is Daesh.” He was speaking to a gathering of French​​ ambassadors. [Dorar]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ The implication is that Assad’s continuation in office should depend on an election. This is a broadly defensible position. It doesn’t help to demand that Assad step down​​ because of all his crimes, or because of overwhelming international opinion. After the Russians maneuver all the other variables in Syria to pacify the country and recover any remaining ground held by Daesh or other​​ rebel groups, and an arrangement is made (hopefully) for autonomy in SDF-held areas, the issue of how to deal with Assad will still be there as the bottom-line issue between Russia and the West.

 

Middle East

The Syrian Foreign Minister was shown in a video clip pointing to İskenderun, which is “occupied” by Turkey, saying: “This land is ours, and we are taking it back, whether they (Turks) like it or not.” A Syrian soap opera was shot in the area. [Qasioun]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

The Coalition said that​​ it​​ had conducted 12 airstrikes in Syria between August 20 and August 26,​​ all 12​​ in​​ Albu Kamal.​​ The Coalition​​ also​​ conducted 2 airstrikes on August 19-20 that were not reported in the previous press release;​​ also in​​ Albu Kamal. [InherentResolve]​​ [Shafaaq]

 

Northwest​​ (No reports)

 

Northeast​​ (No reports)

 

Central and West​​ 

Idlib

The​​ SOHR says​​ that​​ talks are continuing between Tahrir​​ Al-Sham,​​ the​​ Islamic Turkestan​​ Party​​ (western China),​​ and other​​ jihadist groups on one side,​​ and the Turkish​​ Army on the other,​​ to reach a settlement​​ for these opposition militias​​ to dissolve themselves and merge into other opposition factions to avoid​​ the​​ government’s​​ anticipated​​ attack on Idlib. These groups have large numbers of non-Syrian fighters. [SyriaHR]

 

Turkey requested​​ that​​ Russia​​ grant a​​ grace period to allow Tahrir Al-Sham to dissolve itself and merge into other factions,​​ until September​​ 4. However​​ Tahrir Al-Sham​​ seems unwilling to give up its ideological and military buildup.​​ The​​ Syrian government is still mobilizing​​ its​​ forces to attack Idlib​​ at​​ any​​ time. [EnabBaladi]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Tahrir Al-Sham made a major effort earlier to get other groups to unify with them, so as to create a stronger military opposition. Its incentive to do the opposite now would be hard to find.

 

Syrian governmental media says​​ that the​​ Abu Al-Dhuhur crossing in eastern rural​​ Idlib was​​ fully shut​​ down,​​ after the government​​ claimed​​ that 9,000 civilians used​​ it​​ to cross​​ from Idlib​​ back​​ to governmentheld areas. [Dorar]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source sent us a short audio recording on an intercepted wireless communication of one of Tahrir Al-Sham’s commanders in the Idlib area. In the recording, the terrorist orders his fighters to kill anyone in their way, man or child, civilian or military.​​ 

 

East (Deir Ez-Zor)

Deir Ez-Zor​​ District

Daesh said it shot and killed two SDF members in Al-Zar town, in Busayrah subdistrict, on Friday. [A3maq]

 

Mayadin​​ District

The SOHR reports that armed men, most likely from Daesh, opened fire and killed 1 SDF fighter in Al-Jardhi village, in Mayadin. 2 other fighters were wounded. Daesh is initiating revenge attacks against the SDF and civilians, especially those working in the oil sector. [SyriaHR]

 

Albu Kamal​​ District

Daesh executed 3 persons in Albu Khater village, still under its control near Hajin, and 3 more in Al-Susah without specifying reasons. A local source says that 4 beheaded bodies of SDF fighters were found near the Azba oilfield in northern Deir Ez-Zor. [ArabsToday]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that Coalition planes killed 6 Daesh terrorists, including Iraqi and Egyptian commanders, wounded 2 others, and destroyed 2 SUVs in an airstrike on Hajin. The source said the planes also destroyed a Daesh boat, wounding 3 more terrorists.​​ 

 

Syrian Army forces reopened the Al-Salihiya crossing under the supervision of Russian military police. Local media sources in Deir Ez-Zor said that the government and the SDF reached an agreement to reopen the crossing between the government-controlled and SDF-controlled areas under the management of the Russians, rather than the local militia Liwa Al-Quds (Jerusalem Brigade). [Qasioun]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that government forces shelled and rocketed Al-Susah town indiscriminately, killing or wounding 12 civilians, including women and children. The source said Daesh terrorists fled the town across the river when the attack started.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Sunday that Coalition planes bombed a house used by Daesh as hideout near Al-Sha’afa, killing 4 terrorists. However, a woman and child who were in the house were also killed in the airstrike.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that Daesh shot and killed a civilian in Al-Sha’afa town after accusing him of cooperating with the SDF.

 

South​​ 

Suwayda

The Syrian Army is squeezing Daesh in the Tilul Al-Safa (Al-Safa Hills) area, in the Suwayda desert. It destroyed a truck carrying a heavy machine​​ gun in that​​ area yesterday. The Army says it is blocking all desperation​​ Daesh attempts to break​​ its​​ siege. [SyriaNow]

 

The SOHR says that Daesh-controlled areas in rural Suwayda are getting smaller, while Syrian Army forces are extending their rocket and artillery shelling on Daesh positions. The fate of the Suwayda civilians kidnapped by Daesh is still unknown. [SyriaHR]

 

Amir Ibrahim,​​ the​​ Suwayda​​ Governor, offered SL 100,000 ($225) for each man killed in Daesh attacks as compensation to families that lost​​ their relatives. SL 50,000 was offered​​ for​​ each​​ man​​ wounded. [ZamanAlwasl]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said that a group of Daesh​​ terrorists, dressed as Syrian Army special forces, killed Syrian soldiers in their houses in Suwayda.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that government forces captured 2 Daesh members who were hiding in a deserted building east of Suwayda.

 

OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS

 

North Africa

Egypt

The Egyptian Ministry of the Interior says that police killed 5 terrorists in a gunfight in Jabila, on the Sohag-Asyut road​​ in eastern Egypt.​​ [Sumaria]​​ 

 

Daesh said it killed or wounded 15 Egyptian Army soldiers in an attack on a security barrier in the Kilo 17 area, west of Arish​​ in North Sinai, on Saturday. [A3maq]

Another Daesh report of the incident said a group of terrorists attacked Egyptian police on the barrier using light and midsized weapons and rockets, killing or wounding 15 policemen. [ICDNAug26]

 

Libya

Daesh said that a group of its terrorists​​ attacked Libyan National Army units at Wadi Ka’am Gate, in Zliten in Misrata District, killing seven soldiers and wounding ten. [ICDNAug25]

 

Tunisia

The Tunisian National Guard said​​ it​​ had arrested 2 people on Sunday in the Dar Sha’aban Al-Fehri area. They said that the 2 were implicated in forming a “terrorist cell” to recruit young people and transport them to conflict areas. [Tunisien]

 

REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES

 

UNITED STATES

Iraq lost one of its best friends this past weekend, when Senator John McCain died in Arizona at 81. McCain supported the US intervention against Saddam, but also stood by his position when​​ the Iraq policy became less popular. When the policy was later in the balance, his advocacy helped move President Bush to employ the “surge” strategy in 2007 that finally, and with great difficulty, brought Baghdad and Anbar under control.​​ 

McCain’s​​ Iraq role receded in subsequent years, as the public focused on his presidential candidacy in 2008, on other foreign policy and defense issues,​​ and​​ eventually on the adversarial relationship between him and President Donald Trump. Through all of that, however, as the​​ Washington Post​​ stated in a Sunday editorial, “He was such a respected figure that his views had credibility even among many who strongly opposed them. And on some of the great issues of his time . . . Mr. McCain was a courageous and principled leader.​​ [WashingtonPost]

 

ASIA

Afghanistan

Afghani authorities said on Sunday that Abu​​ Saad​​ Erhabi, the​​ leader​​ of Daesh in Afghanistan, was killed following a large air and land strike by local and foreign forces on Daesh positions. Neither Daesh nor the​​ International Coalition​​ had​​ commented on the news​​ at the time of the article. [BasNews]

A spokesman for US forces in Afghanistan, Lieutenant-Colonel Martin O’Donnell, said on Sunday that a US airstrike on Saturday had targeted a “senior leader of a designated terrorist organization,​​ apparently referring to Erhabi. [Yahoo]

 

Daesh said on Sunday it killed a pro-government militia commander and another fighter in Khogyani. [A3maq]

 

A suicide bomb blast killed at least two people on Saturday outside an election commission office in the eastern city of Jalalabad. “It killed two people, and four others were wounded,” provincial governor spokesman Attaullah Khogyani said, adding that a suicide attacker was responsible for the explosion. [Dawn]

Daesh said on Saturday it killed 15 people and wounded 20 in a suicide attack with an explosives vest on a gathering of government soldiers and local mukhtars in District 5, in Jalalabad. [A3maq]

 

Tajikistan

Afghan officials say that the Tajikistan Air Force attacked Taliban fighters, killing 6 of them. They say that the Taliban engaged Tajik border guards, killing 2 of them in the border area between the two countries, before the planes chased and killed them. ​​ [Anadolu]

 

DAESH MEDIA

 

A​​ recording purporting to be a new speech from Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi was released on August 22. The audio recording​​ called on Daesh followers to fight on, congratulated attackers who had carried out attacks in Canada and Europe, and gave greetings for Eid Al-Adha (which began on Tuesday last week). The recording also urged Iraqi Daesh followers to attack Shia Muslims, referring to them as “apostates.” Reuters wrote that they could not confirm whether the recording was Al-Baghdadi’s voice. [Reuters]

 

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