July 5, 2018
SDF in Hasaka
Speculation about new government exceeds progress in forming it. [..]
Kuwait fund commits to $80 million loan to build Iraqi schools. [..]
Combined military units’ campaign kills 16 Daesh fighters in Tooz. [..]
Major IFP clearing operation in SW Kirkuk kills 15 Daesh fighters. [..]
Another mukhtar (and his children) killed, in Mosul province. [..]
Coalition’s desert airstrikes kill 18 Daesh in southern Hatra. [..]
Three Daesh attacks in Baaj kill 7. [..]
UNHCR official says KRG still gets 700 new Syrian refugees per month. [..]
SDF, Syrian government reported cooperating in multiple fields. [..]
SDF captures 2 more villages, wide rural area in SE Hasaka. [..]
Iraqi intel says Baghdadi’s son was killed by a Russian airstrike. [..]
Two US soldiers killed on patrol in Deir Ez-Zor. [..]
Anti-Assad militias in southern Syria say they killed 150 Syrian troops, destroyed 19 tanks. [..]
Afghanistan: Government assault kills 23 Daesh fighters in eastern Afghanistan. [..]
REPORTS FROM IRAQ
Fawzi Akram, a member of the central committee of the Turkmen Party, described PUK statements about the elections as exaggerated. The PUK said earlier that Turkey is feeling defeated by Iran because of the low Turkmen turnout and that President Erdogan is highly disappointed. Akram says that there are no signs of Turkish disappointment, and that regional support for the political process in Iraq is highly appreciated. He says the Turkmen will accept the election results, whatever they are. [BaghdadToday]
Muqtada Al-Sadr says he will not allow Iraq to be run by outside countries, saying that from now on, Iraq will be run by its sons from inside Iraq, through patriotic and decent Iraqi coalitions. [Arabi21]
DaeshDaily comment. Talk is cheap, as they say. Reality is that Al-Sadr won the opportunity to form a new government but so far has failed to produce one and in the process has introduced cross-cutting layers of confusion and discord. It would seem that any coalition he assembles will have to include either Al-Amiri’s pro-Iran Al-Fath Coalition or Al-Abadi’s pro-West Al-Nasr Coalition, if not both, and a lot of western money could be riding on the outcome. Actually managing a government is a lot more difficult than mouthing off about it.
Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, a Qatar-backed paper, says that the struggle for the position of PM is the main issue in the relations among parties that announced coalitions, including Al-Fath (Conquest) and Sa’irun. The paper says that Al-Sadr is leaning toward supporting Haider Al-Abadi for the position, while Al-Fath is supporting Hadi Al-Amiri, to the dissatisfaction of Al-Sadr. More complications are expected when the results of manual counting of votes are announced. [BaghdadToday]
Okaz, a Saudi daily, wrote about a meeting in Istanbul held by several Iraqi Sunni political leaders, chaired by Salim Al-Jubouri, the Speaker of the CoR. The paper says that the meeting showed the deep divisions among Sunni leaders, many of whom did not support such meetings outside Iraq that would only lead to more sectarian tendencies. [SkyPress]
Said Memo Zaini, a media official for the KDP, denied any US or Saudi pressure on his party to enter into a coalition with PM Haider Al-Abadi. Zaini says that the US and Saudi Arabia are friends of the Kurds, and they both want Al-Abadi to be Prime Minister, but they never exerted any pressure on the KDP. He adds that if Al-Abadi is committed to the Kurdish people’s rights and solving problems between the Kurdistan Region and the central government, the KDP would happily support him. [BaghdadToday]
A KDP source says that his party held thorough discussions with the PUK and other Kurdish parties during the past several days to agree on a unified negotiating position before going to Baghdad to discuss the formation of the new government. The main topics agreed upon, according to the source, are solving the problems of Kirkuk and the “disputed” areas according to Article 140 of the Constitution, approving a decent share for the Kurdistan Region from the public state budget, and achieving balance in top positions in Iraqi ministries and institutions. [AlAraby]
The Supreme Judicial Council announced on Thursday that the Karkh Court of Inquiry had certified the confessions of 3 “terrorists” accused of killing the PMF financial director Qasim Al-Zubaydi. Council spokesman Judge Abd Al-Sattar Birqdar said that among the killers was a “contractor” who confessed to killing Al-Zubaydi because of “late payment of financial receivables.” The other 2 killers belonged to the security services and had “common financial interests.” [Sumaria]
DaeshDaily comment. The many Daesh Daily readers who work for contractors, as we do, may find the contractor defendant’s late payment excuse injurious to their professional reputation.
The Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development has signed an agreement to loan an equivalent of $80,000,000 to Iraq for development projects, including the development of 73 schools in 15 Iraqi provinces. This loan is intended to aid in Iraq’s economic and societal development. [Rudaw]
The KRG representative in the EU said that the European Parliament seeks to re-normalize relations between Erbil and Baghdad and to dissolve the PMF. It also stresses the importance of applying constitutional law in dealing with natural resources. [Rudaw]
The Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar quoted informed sources in Iraq as saying that court verdicts against Daesh members, both death sentences and life imprisonment, will be multiplied in the coming days. This includes verdicts that have passed the appeals phase and become final. 12 Daesh convicts were executed last week in response to Daesh’s execution of 8 hostages. [BaghdadToday]
Sumaria carried a lengthy account of the confessions of a top Daesh official’s wife. Mona Jassem Mohammed Al-Khalifawi was the wife of Samir Abd Al-Khalifawi, aka “Hajji Samir,” a top-ranking deputy of Al-Baghdadi before being killed in 2013. Mona was married to “Hajji Samir” in 1989, when he was a Major in the Iraqi Army. He was promoted to Colonel in 2003, and after the fall of the Saddam regime, he joined Jama’at Al-Tawhid wal-Jihad (JTT), which later became Al-Qaeda in Iraq, which later became Daesh. He was arrested by US forces twice in 2004 and imprisoned for 8 months total.
After his release, “Hajji Samir” and his wife moved back and forth between Syria and Tarmiya (Baghdad Governorate). They settled in Aleppo and lived with Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi and his wife and children. Mona said that around this time, “Hajji Samir” became close with Al-Baghdadi and offered him military advice. “Hajji Samir” also started to run a training camp for Syrians and foreigners who were joining Daesh. In 2013, Free Syrian Army (FSA) soldiers raided their house in Aleppo and attempted to arrest “Hajji Samir,” but eventually shot him after an argument, which caused the explosives belt he was wearing to detonate, according to Mona.
Then she was taken by the FSA and interrogated for 8 months, after which she and her son were released in a prisoner swap between the FSA and Daesh. After the release, she stayed briefly in Turkey, and then lived in a large house in Shuaitat (in Deir Ez-Zor, although Mona said it was in Anbar), together with the various wives of Al-Baghdadi. After 2 months, she left for an IDP camp in Iraq, and was later arrested for trying to use a forged ID. [Sumaria]
The outgoing Yazidi MP in the CoR, Vian Dakhil, said on Thursday that she had issued an objection to an Iraqi Foreign Ministry statement, which called for foreign countries to take custody of foreign national children related to Daesh members who have fulfilled their sentences or were not convicted of crimes. Dakhil expressed skepticism that all the children in question were from Daesh families, and said that some could be Iraqi children, including Yazidi children, who had been previously kidnapped by Daesh. The Iraqi government is currently holding in custody 833 children from 14 different nationalities. [BasNews]
Security-related incidents reported
North (Tarmiya, Taji, etc.)
Baghdad Ops Command said on Thursday that it had arrested a person wanted on terrorism charges who tried to enter the capital from the north. [Ghad]
On Thursday, Iraqi police said that 2 civilians were injured in north Baghdad by an explosion in a passenger car. They were taken by security to a nearby hospital. [Sumaria]
Daesh says it killed an Iraqi soldier and wounded two others in clashes in the Mashro’ Tareq area, north of Taji, on Wednesday. [A3maq]
Here Daesh says it shot at an Iraqi Army recon tower with light weapons in the Mashro’ Tareq area, killing one soldier and wounding two others. [ICDNJul5]
Southeast (Mada’in, etc.)
A cache of explosive materials was found buried in farmland in the area of Ja’ara in Mada’in. [Ghad]
West (Ghazaliya, Abu Ghraib, etc.)
A police source reported that on Thursday night that an IED exploded near an Army checkpoint within the Abu Ghraib subdistrict, resulting in injury to 1 soldier and 1 civilian. [Sumaria]
Daesh said on Thursday it killed an Iraqi Army officer and a soldier with an IED in the Abu Ghraib area. [A3maq]
Total Baghdad incidents reported: 5 (Includes only incidents reported)
Total IED incidents reported: 1
The Center for Security Information said that units under the Directorate of Military Intelligence arrested 2 persons wanted on terrorism charges in Fallujah District, and that the same units seized a cache of explosives in Jubeil in south Falluja. [Sumaria]
The Directorate of Military Intelligence says that it arrested a Daesh figure responsible for conveying weapons between Albu Ali and Albu Dhiab. The person is also known for authoring several popular slogans and poems during the anti-government protests in Anbar in 2013–2014. After news of the poet’s arrest spread, supporters began to circulate on social media a video of his confession, allegedly taken after his arrest. [BaghdadToday] [Buratha]
See related story under Diyala, below
The Center for Security Information said that units under Samarra Ops Command had arrested 2 persons on terrorism charges in the Ramadi Island area, northwest of Ramadi near the desert. [Baghdadia]
A DaeshDaily source says PMF units captured a Daesh female member at a checkpoint near Baiji. The source says the woman’s brother is the Daesh wali of the Shirqat area, who had fled to Deir Ez-Zor earlier. The source said the woman was planning to flee to Turkey through Baghdad International Airport.
The Center for Security Information said that units under Samarra Ops Command had found 3 IEDs and arrested 5 persons in the Albu Nesan neighborhood in the city of Samarra. [Baghdadia]
Eastern Salahuddin (Al-Daur, Tooz)
A DaeshDaily source says Rapid Intervention, IFP, and PMF units started a military campaign to clear the Tuz Khurmatu mountains, killing 16 terrorists, including a Syrian commander, and finding weapons and ammunition hidden in tunnels. The source says many terrorists fled on motorcycles toward Jazeera Samarra.
Daesh sources said on Wednesday that four Rapid Intervention soldiers were killed or wounded when an IED exploded on them in Shiraw village, in Tooz. [ICDNJul4]
Intelligence sources said that a Daesh leader and media official responsible for the Daesh publication A3maq has been arrested in Diyala. The sources said “Abu Khattab Al-Iraqi” was found with computers and tablets he was using to promote the Daesh social media campaign “Nada’ #88” (“Call/Appeal #88”). This campaign apparently refers to the arrest of the Daesh figure in Ramadi noted above. [Buratha]
See related story under Ramadi, above
Daesh said it targeted 2 PMF positions with 2 Katyushas in the Abbara area, on Wednesday. [ICDNJul5]
Central Diyala (Muqdadiya/Abu Saida)
Diyala Ops Commander Mizher Al-Azzawi announced on Thursday that there was an ongoing search operation in the areas of the Himrin Basin north of Lake Himrin, which had so far cleared about 60 villages and a total area of 4,000 km2. He said that the operation has so far resulted in the destruction of 2 Daesh safehouses and an explosives cache containing 22 IEDs and a 200-liter barrel of “C4.” [Ghad]
Northern Diyala (Kifri, Khanaqin, Khalis north)
A senior security source in Diyala said on Thursday that a special security team was being formed to investigate an “IED network” in Khanaqin. The source said that Diyala security leaders had authorized the creation of the team after a series of IED explosions in Khanaqin in the past two weeks, including a “sonic IED” detonation at a judge’s house at dawn that morning, which exploded without causing any injuries. [Sumaria]
Daesh sources said on Thursday that an IED exploded in the house of a judge in Hay Ramadhan, in Khanaqin. [ICDNJul5]
Hawija (Riyadh, Al-Zab, etc.)
The 27th Brigade of the PMF killed 2 Daesh fighters who tried to attack the village of Fadikha, in Hawija District, according to a statement by the PMF media office. [PressIraq]
A DaeshDaily source says Daesh appointed Radhwan Kurdi as its military commander for the Hawija area.
Daesh said it shot at the house of a tribal PMF commander in Halawat Al-Wusta village, in Al-Zab, on Monday. [ICDNJul4]
Daesh sources said on Wednesday that several tribal PMF fighters were wounded in clashes in Al-Mahafif village, in Hawija District. [ICDNJul4]
Daesh sources said on Thursday that a PMF fighter was killed and others “lost” in clashes in the Khatouniya area, in Hawija District. [ICDNJul5]
Security and medical sources say that a beheaded body of a PMF fighter was found near a checkpoint in the village of Murad Khatoun in Hawija. [Forat]
Daesh sources said on Thursday that the body of a PMF member was “found” beheaded in Murad Khatoun village, in Hawija. [ICDNJul5]
Southwest (Daquq, Rashad, Taza, etc.)
The Federal Police command said on Thursday that 15 terrorists had been killed and another 15 arrested so far in their clearing operation in the southwestern areas of Kirkuk Province. Command said in a statement that 63 villages had been cleared in Rashad (Daquq), Hawija, and Riyadh. The IFP also destroyed 7 car bombs, 24 IEDs, 27 Daesh safehouses, and 19 Daesh tunnels. [Sumaria]
A DaeshDaily source says IFP units killed 4 Daesh terrorists, captured 4 others, including a commander, and destroyed 8 tunnels in the ongoing operation in Rashad desert. Later on, the source says the forces captured 11 more Daesh terrorists.
Nineveh Plain (Hamdaniya, Tel Keif, etc.)
Hanin Qaddo, a CoR member for Hadi Al-Amiri’s Badr Organization, expressed surprise at the accusations of 30th PMF Brigade, who claimed that some armed men holding fake PMF ID cards are using the name of the Brigade for personal purposes in Mosul. Qaddo says the Brigade is not based in the city of Mosul, but rather in Nineveh Plain, to protect minorities and preserve law and order. He adds that the presence of the Brigade thwarted serious plans of certain political forces to control and impose “demographic changes” in Ninewa Plain. [SNG]
An officer in Ninewa Ops Command said that a child had been killed and a civilian wounded in a Daesh attack on the Shammar tribe in Hamdaniya. [Rudaw]
The Iraqi Ministry of Migration and IDPs says that 373 IDPs have returned to their homes in Mosul. The IDPs are the first group of several willing to return home. Army trucks carried IDPs’ furniture to their home cities. [Anadolu] [Xendan]
The Center for Security Information announced on Thursday that units under the Directorate of Military Intelligence arrested 3 members of a “terrorist cell” in the Al-Tanak neighborhood of west Mosul. [Sumaria] [Ghad]
In what may be a more intriguing version of the same story, a DaeshDaily source says Iraqi Army 20th division captured 4 Daesh terrorists who were hiding in the house of the mukhtar of Hay Al-Tanak.
Daesh sources said on Thursday that the bodies of seven PMF members were “found” shot west of Mosul. [ICDNJul5]
A security source in Mosul said on Thursday that 2 Daesh fighters attacked the village of Tal Khaimah, in the Hamidat subdistrict, between Aski Mosul and Badoush. The source said that the terrorists executed the village mukhtar and 3 of his children before security personnel arrived to fight them, adding that there were 6 wounded among those security personnel and local civilians. [Ghad]
Daesh sources said that the mukhtar of the village and three of his sons were beheaded. The sources also said IEDs were detonated on security units that arrived at the village, killing or wounding several security members. [ICDNJul5]
A DaeshDaily source says Daesh attacked the village of Al-Abghala (spelling approx.), south of Badoush, killing the mukhtar of the village, his son, and an Iraqi soldier and wounding seven other soldiers. The source also says Daesh set 6 houses on fire. (We were able to determine that this is another version of the story above.)
DaeshDaily comment. The steady pace of attacks on mukhtars, who are local civilian officials, is a worrisome trend, especially as Iraq seems not to have provided much protection to mukhtars despite the large number of incidents. This is a victory for Daesh, showing it can kill local government officials with impunity, which of course persuades others not to serve in these positions and undermines Iraqi governance.
Daesh said it killed or wounded 12 Iraqi Army members with a car bomb in the same Tal Khaimah village on Wednesday. [A3maq]
It also said it killed a National Security Service member and three PMF fighters in the same village, on Wednesday. [A3maq]
A police source says that unidentified gunmen attacked a family in the village of Khaimah, on the Mosul–Tal Afar Road, with silenced guns, killing 5 family members and wounding a woman and a 4-year-old child. [BaghdadToday] [IraqPress]
A DaeshDaily source says Coalition planes killed 6 Daesh terrorists in an airstrike near Albu Saif village in Hammam Al-Alil, just south of the city.
A DaeshDaily source says Coalition planes destroyed 4 Daesh vehicles and killed 18 terrorists in an airstrike on a Daesh convoy south of Hatra. The source also said the planes targeted a Daesh gathering near Khunaifis village, south of Hatra.
An Iraqi Army official said that a Daesh attack had killed 4 family members in a village in Baaj on Thursday. Captain Abbas Al-Zeidan said in a statement that about 15 Daesh fighters in 4WD-type vehicles attacked the village of Al-‘Azz, killing two men, a woman, and a 14-year-old boy. [Rudaw]
A DaeshDaily source says two civilians were killed and another wounded, all from the same family, in a Daesh attack on a house in Tal Safouk. The source says people of the village chased the terrorists and killed 4 of them.
Daesh sources said on Wednesday that a Shammar tribe PMF fighter was killed in an attack near the Hamdaniya Compound, in Baaj. [ICDNJul4]
Daesh sources said on Wednesday that two PMF fighter were wounded when Daesh targeted their position in the Buhairat area, in Iskandariya, with a mortar shell. [ICDNJul4]
Amin Awad, UNHCR Director for the MENA region, spoke on Thursday in Erbil about the situation in Iraq for IDPs and Syrian refugees. He said that about 3.9 million IDP Iraqis had returned to their homes since the end of the war, and that about 2 million were still displaced. Awad also noted that the Kurdistan Region had taken in about 97% of the Syrian refugees in Iraq, and that they were still arriving at the rate of about 700 new refugees per month. He said that these rates showed no sign of slowing and that it was impossible to return the Syrian refugees currently residing in Iraq. [BasNews]
The PM of the Kurdistan Region, Nechirvan Barzani, met with Amin Awad, UNHCR Director for MENA, and Bruno Guido, the UNHCR representative for Iraq. According to a statement published by the KRG, Barzani confirmed the readiness of the KRG to coordinate with the Iraqi government and the UNHCR to return IDPs to their homes. [Rudaw]
Rangin Abdullah, a CoR member for the Gorran (“Change”) party, says that the statements of Nechirvan Barzani describing the PKK as occupying Iraqi territories, are a pretext for Turkey to enter the territory of Iraqi Kurdistan. She says that the PKK heroically fought Daesh and defended people in southern Kurdish areas, and that it needs support rather than condemnation. She asked the Kurdish CoR to question the Kurdish PM over such statements. [Roj]
REPORTS FROM TURKEY
Binali Yıldırım, the Turkish PM, admitted that Turkish forces are now holding 350 km2 inside Iraq, extending from the Iranian border to Al-Khabur, near Mount Qandil. He says that his country is adopting an offensive rather than a defensive policy to defeat terrorism.
He says Turkey and the US are working together in Manbij, saying that his country told the Americans that it cannot tolerate any threat in northern Syria. [Shafaaq]
REPORTS FROM SYRIA
According to Agence France Press, the UN Security Council failed to come to an agreement on southern Syria due to Russia’s position on the issue. [Qasioun]
Yeni Shafaq, a Turkish daily, says that the Kurds and Syrian government are cooperating in military, economic, and educational fields. Joint checkpoints will be established in Hasaka, while the SDF might hand over the border crossings with Iraq and Turkey to the Syrian government. [Dorar]
The British newspaper “i,” affiliated with the Independent, published an article by Kim Sengupta in which she wrote that Daesh was regrouping in Syria. She said that there were estimated to be between 8,000 and 10,000 Daesh fighters remaining in Syria, and that the group was taking advantage of changing dynamics in the Syrian civil war to launch more attacks. Sengupta noted that the US-backed Syrian Kurdish fighters are now busy fighting Turkish forces. [BasNews]
The Coalition says that an explosion in Al-Hayya village, a village east of Manbij city, injured more than two dozen people July 5.
It says the explosion was caused by a suspected remote-controlled explosive device during a peaceful protest of approximately 2,000 citizens in Al-Hayya.
It also says that U.S. and Turkish forces have been conducting independent, coordinated patrols on the northern demarcation line outside Manbij since June 18. Security within Manbij is maintained by the Manbij Military Council. Manbij remains secure and the MMC is investigating the Al-Hayya blast.
It says that no further details are available at this time. [InherentResolve]
A land mine explosion targeting anti-Turkish protestors demonstrating in Manbij killed one civilian and wounded 22. The explosion took place in the Al-Hayya neighborhood, east of Manbij. [Hawar]
Daesh sources said on Thursday that several people were killed or wounded when an IED exploded on a gathering of SDF supporters in Al-Hayya, in Manbij. [ICDNJul5]
A local source in Jarabulus reported the explosion of 2 car bombs Thursday morning, at the same time but in different locations of the city, resulting in material damage only. [Hawar]
A DaeshDaily source says SDF captured 2 villages and hundreds of farms from Daesh southeast of Shaddadi, close to the Iraqi border. The source says Daesh terrorists fled from the area.
Qasioun also reported that the SDF took over two villages in Hasaka near the Syria-Iraq border. [Qasioun]
Daesh sources said on Thursday that an SDF commander was killed when an IED exploded on his car south of Amuda. [ICDNJul5]
Daesh said it damaged an SUV carrying SDF members with an IED in Shaddadi city, on Tuesday. [A3maq]
North Raqqa (Ayn Eissa, Tal Abyad, etc.)
Daesh sources said on Thursday that the commander of the SDF military academy was wounded in an attack near Tal Al-Saman, north of Raqqa. [ICDNJul5]
Central and West
Local sources reported fierce fighting between armed opposition factions and the Syrian Army in Tadif, east of the city of Aleppo. The opposition took control of some Syrian regime positions before being forced out, according to the sources. [Qasioun]
Iraqi intelligence says that a Russian airstrike in Homs, and not a Syrian Army attack, killed Abu Hudhaifa Al-Badri, the son of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. 11 other Daesh gunmen were killed in the airstrike. [Dorar] [Yahoo]
East (Deir Ez-Zor)
Deir Ez-Zor District
Two US soldiers from the Coalition were killed by Daesh mines while patrolling areas in Namliya. The Coalition and SDF are running joint patrols in the area. [Dorar]
Daesh pronounced on Thursday that it had killed 4 US soldiers with an IED explosion in the village of Namliya, near Al-Suwar in northeast Deir Ez-Zor. [Qasioun]
Daesh claimed on Thursday that a group of its terrorists ambushed a Coalition convoy in Al-Namliya village, near Al-Suwar, on Wednesday and detonated 18 IEDs, killing four US soldiers, wounding others, and damaging 3 vehicles. It also claimed the terrorists clashed with the convoy before “returning safely.” [ICDNJul5]
Coalition helicopters executed a landing behind Daesh lines in the city of Hajin, east of Deir Ez-Zor, followed by an airstrike. The 15-minute landing was aimed at arresting Daesh leaders. The results of the operation are so far unclear. [EnabBaladi]
Daesh said it killed an SDF member by detonating an IED on an SDF gathering in Al-Hasin village, north of Deir Ez-Zor city, near Al-Suwar, on Wednesday. [ICDNJul5]
Albu Kamal District
The opposition Military Ops Room in southern Syria says that since June 15, 150 government troops have been killed, including several officers, while 19 tanks and 4 APCs were destroyed. [Dorar]
Opposition militias claimed that they killed 37 government troops and destroyed one T-72 tank west of Daraa, and killed 15 other government troops east of Daraa, while blocking the government Army’s attempt to capture Saida. [Qasioun]
Daesh issues an infographic about developments in the Yarmouk Basin area during the last 10 days. It says that anti-Assad opposition groups asked Daesh affiliate Jaish Khaled for a truce and the JK accepted. It says 250 opposition fighters defected and went to the Yarmouk Basin area. It also says that 4,000 people who left the Hauran area were handed over by the opposition to the government, and went to the Yarmouk Basin. It says the JK targeted government forces in Sheikh Maskin with rockets. It also says that many people from the Yarmouk Basin joined the JK to fight the government. [ICDNJul4]
Daesh sources said on Thursday that opposition groups, who signed a truce with the government, closed the road between Saham and Hait town in order to prevent people from going to Jaish Khaled controlled areas. [ICDNJul5]
OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS
Ismail Kawthari, a commander in the Revolutionary Guards, threatened to cut off oil supplies through the Straits of Hormuz if the US banned the export of Iranian oil. Similar statements were also repeated by Qasem Soleimani, the commander of the Revolutionary Guards, earlier on Thursday. Iran exports 2.3 million barrels of oil per day. [BaghdadNews]
On Thursday, US Central Command spokesman Bill Urban said that the US was ready to ensure that the Strait of Hormuz is available for free navigation as allowed by international law. [BasNews]
A Jordanian military news source, Hala Akhbar, reported that continuous Jordanian efforts at diplomacy succeeded in renewing negotiations between Russia and the Syrian opposition. [Dorar]
REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES
The German Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution admitted that the YPG and PYD are the Syrian wing of the PKK. The conclusion was stated in a 138-page report, which also mentioned that 14,500 PKK supporters live in Germany. [Anadolu]
23 Daesh fighters, including a leader, were killed on Thursday in a government attack on a Daesh hideout in eastern Afghanistan, according to a Nangarhar Province spokesman. The spokesman added that 3 Taliban fighters had also been killed on Thursday morning, including senior leader Mullah Hakimullah. [Sumaria]
Daesh said it shot and killed an Afghan soldier in a village in Chaparhar, in Nangarhar, on Wednesday. [A3maq]
Daesh said on Thursday it killed 5 Taliban members, wounded 7 others, and destroyed a vehicle with an IED in the Khogyani area, in Nangarhar. [A3maq]
The Philippine Army said at least 13 Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) members were killed in a series of clashes in Maguindanao that started last Sunday.
Lt. Col. Gerry Besana, Western Mindanao Command public affairs officer, said Thursday that “Since the 1st day of the intensified operations conducted by the troops under the JTF Central led by Brigadier General Cirilito Sobejana in the different areas in Central Mindanao, a total of 13 killed and undetermined number of wounded enemies has been reported while on the government side 14 were wounded and two were killed during encounters.”
Besana said one of the fatalities is Commander Marrox, BIFF Brigade Commander of the Karialan Faction. “He (Marrox) was a known bomber and one of the prime suspects with warrant of arrest in the Mamasapano clash which resulted in the death of the (Special Action Force) SAF 44,” he said.
“Marrox spearheaded the ambush to the troops of the 40th Infantry Battalion a year ago.
Besana said the latest encounter is a clash between around 10 members of the bandit Karialan group and troops of 2nd Mechanized Battalion in the vicinity of Barangay Dapiawan, Datu Saudi Ampatuan, Maguindanao at around 6:55 am. Besana said the troops were conducting zoning operation at the Dapiawan Elementary School when they were fired upon by BIFF members. “Troops immediately established their defensive position and returned fire. 60mm mortar fire was also delivered,” he said. [ManilaShimbun]
A Philippine Army spokesman says that a junior officer of the 40th Infantry Battalion conducting a clearing operation in a remote village of Mamasapano on Thursday was killed in an ensuing firefight with a militant Moro group linked to Daesh. The spokesman said that the junior officer was among the soldiers conducting a clearing operation in the village when they ran into members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF). He also said a separate fighting erupted around 7 a.m. in the village of Dapiawan in the nearby town of Datu Saudi Ampatuan, also in Maguindanao province, though there was no reported casualty from either side.
The military assaults against BIFF guerrillas began during the weekend, supposedly targeting BIFF leader Abu Turaipe, whose faction had pledged allegiance to Daesh. But Turaipe is believed to have escaped again. [Inquirer]
A Philippine Army spokesman said that a member of the Daesh-linked Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) was killed and four firearms were recovered as advancing government troops continue their pursuit operation against the terror group in the interior of Maguindanao province. He said the latest in the series of clashes since July 1 occurred Wednesday (July 4) at the border of Mamasapano and Rajah Buayan towns, where a BIFF militant was killed and four firearms were recovered from the fleeing extremists. [PNA]
Daesh said on Wednesday that a group of its terrorists attacked the Philippine Army 40th infantry brigade in the Pidsandawan area in the Rajah Buayan municipality, in Maguindanao, killing 20 soldiers and capturing weapons and ammunition, before “returning safely.” [ICDNJul4] [A3maq]
Daesh publishes a photo of one of its terrorists, saying he was killed in the Baghdad area. [ICDNJul5]