An Update On ISIS Activities

January 23, 2018

 

Afrin

 

 

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

Al-Abadi raps Turkey’s “two-faced” policy toward Kurds. [..]

NATO head indicates expanded support to Iraq for military training. [..]

Daesh & liberation campaign have left 3,000 Anbar residents handicapped. [..]

Contamination feared from dead Daesh bodies in Mosul. [..]

Mysterious armed group challenges security forces in Halabja Province. [..]

 

Syria

UN highlights enormous displacement problem from Afrin invasion. [..]

Mattis now says Afrin invasion detracts from anti-Daesh effort. [..]

UN, US raise concerns about Syrian chemical weapons in eastern Ghouta. [..]

Military reports muddled, conflicting on Afrin conflict. [..]

Turkey-allied militias again planning an attack on Manbij. [..]

SDF remains under pressure from Daesh counter-attacks in​​ Albu Kamal. [..]

 

Libya

Death toll rises from dual vehicle bomb attacks in Benghazi. [..]

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

 

Iraqi PM Haider Al-Abadi said that Turkey is being two-faced with Kurds, saying that Turkish President Erdogan supported the Kurds in Iraq until the Kurdistan independence referendum was conducted and Turkey felt threatened,​​ while​​ Turkey has been denying rights to the Kurds in Turkey. Al-Abadi added that “the Turkish presence in Iraq is a symbolic presence.”  [Hawar]

 

Reconstruction

Tuesday, Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi received a phone call from NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who congratulated Al-Abadi for his victories over Daesh and expressed his admiration of the Iraqi forces’ capabilities. According to Al-Abadi’s office statement, the two sides discussed increasing and accelerating the training of the Iraqi forces and developing the new military educational curriculum to include the infantry, intelligence, and other ranks, while building the capabilities of the MoD. [Sumaria]

 

Tuesday, Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi’s office announced that Al-Abadi has headed to Switzerland to participate in the World Economic Forum in Davos. [Sumaria]

 

Tuesday, the National Commission for Investment in Iraq announced that it will present 157 projects for investment in the donor conference scheduled on February 12-14 in Kuwait. The list includes projects in the Petroleum, Gas, Transportation, Housing, and Agriculture sectors, among others. [Rudaw]

 

Tuesday, head of the National Alliance,​​ Ammar Al-Hakim met with UNAMI representative Jan Kubis and UN Assistant​​ Secretary General Miroslav Lajčák and discussed the support Iraq needs in the​​ donor conference scheduled next month in Kuwait. Al-Hakim invited the international community to support Iraq in returning IDPs. He noted that holding the elections on time is an “important factor for maintaining the victories”​​ (over Daesh).​​ [Sumaria]

 

Anti-Daesh Campaign

Al-Sharq Al-Awsat​​ newspaper revealed that the German Embassy in Baghdad filed an official complaint with the Iraq Foreign Ministry concerning the decision to execute a female German Daesh member, noting that the German government was surprised by the decision. The decision to execute​​ the​​ German national of Moroccan origin was issued by the Central Criminal Court in Baghdad on Sunday. The German government had formally requested​​ that​​ the Iraqi government hand over female Daesh German nationals after they were convicted, according to​​ Al-Sharq Al-Awsat. [Sumaria]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ But not male German nationals. So much for gender equality.

 

According to a French source familiar with the case, three French​​ jihadi​​ women were arrested in Iraq for joining Daesh, and they are awaiting their trial in Iraq. Another source familiar with the investigation said that the three women were arrested after the fall of Mosul. The French Foreign Ministry said it has limited information​​ about them, provided by​​ the Red Cross. [Rudaw]

 

BAGHDAD

Security-related incidents reported

North​​ (Tarmiya, Taji, etc.)​​ 

Tuesday, the Baghdad​​ Operations​​ Command​​ reported that security units killed 2 Daesh terrorists in Dhabitiya who attempted a suicide attack on Baghdad. According to the BOC, one of them was a terrorist transporter and the other was wearing a suicide belt.​​ [Baghdadia]​​ 

 

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

According to security sources,​​ one​​ person was killed and​​ four​​ others wounded in an IED explosion in a street market in Al-Yusufiyah​​ in southern Baghdad. [BasNews]

 

Local sources reported that unknown gunmen shot and killed two people in a civilian vehicle who own an auto repair shop in​​ the​​ Al-Duwanem area in southwest Baghdad. According to the source, the assailants escaped. [BasNews]

 

Total Baghdad incidents reported:  ​​​​ 3(Includes only incidents reported)

Total IED incidents reported:  ​​​​ 1

 

ANBAR

According to an MoD statement, the Coalition provided the 38th​​ brigade of the 10th​​ division of the Iraqi Army with equipment to hunt down Daesh cells in Anbar. The statement added that Coalition forces continue to train Army​​ personnel​​ at the​​ Coalition’s​​ Basmaya​​ Combat​​ Training Center. [Forat]

 

Tuesday, Anbar PC member Athal Al-Fahdawi confirmed that the military and terrorist operations left over 3,000​​ people​​ handicapped in the Anbar governorate. Al-Fahdawi noted that specialized committees have been formed in order to compensate the handicapped people in addition to​​ allocating a retirement salary and residential land through the compensation committee and Al-Shuhada​​ (Martyrs)​​ Foundation. [Sumaria]

 

Falluja

Tuesday, commander of the Qarmat Al-Falluja brigade, Jumaa Fazaa Al-Jumeili, announced the deaths of 3 suicide attackers in Dhabitya in the Qarma district in eastern Falluja. According to Al-Jumeili, security units cornered and invaded a Daesh location inside a house in Dhabitya, killing three suicide attackers who were wearing suicide belts. 2 soldiers were killed during the clashes. He added that security units proceeded to search the entire area in case​​ there were​​ other terrorist units. [BasNews]​​ 

 

Tuesday, the General Directorate of Security and Intelligence announced that an ammunition depot was found in Saqlawiya, northeast of Falluja city. According to the statement, the depot contained 31 various IEDs, 30 explosives, 1 Katyusha rocket, and a rocket launch pad, among others.​​ [Ghad]​​ 

 

Ramadi

Tuesday, a security official in Anbar revealed that US artillery​​ at​​ the Habbaniya base in eastern Ramadi shelled Daesh targets in Al-Razaza and​​ the​​ western Ramadi desert areas. [BasNews]

 

Anah​​ (including Rawa)

A military source in Anbar reported on Tuesday that a civilian was killed upon returning to his​​ IED-rigged house in Al-Qal’a neighborhood in​​ central​​ Rawa. [Sumaria]​​ 

 

SALAHUDDIN​​ (No reports)

 

DIYALA

Tuesday, Dijla Ops Commander Mizhar Al-Azzawi announced the arrest of 9 suspects on criminal charges and 1 suspect on terrorist charges in various parts of Diyala.​​ [Ghad]

 

Tuesday,​​ the Chairman​​ of the​​ Diyala PC​​ Security Committee,​​ Sadeq Al-Husseini announced that an airstrike on a guesthouse near the Himrin Lake led to the deaths of a Daesh commander and 2 of his companions as well as the destruction of the guesthouse,​​ which was made up of underground tunnels. Al-Husseini said that in 2017,​​ airstrikes contributed to killing over 50 Daesh members, including prominent commanders, in Al-Zoor Basin, Al-Waqf, Himrin, and Nafut Khana.​​ [Sumaria]

 

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

Tuesday,​​ the chairman of the Mansouriya​​ subdistrict council, Ragheb Al-Ankabi, reported that Daesh shelled a gravel factory in the Shirween outskirts​​ with 3 mortar shells.​​ Security units responded to the source of the mortar shells and took necessary precautions. [Ghad]​​ 

 

Tuesday, Dijla Ops Commander Mizhar Al-Azzawi announced that Iraqi Army Air destroyed 3 Daesh tunnels​​ dug into​​ land surrounding Qara Tapa​​ in Kifri District​​ in northeast Diyala. [Dijlah]

 

KIRKUK​​ (No reports)

 

NINEWA

Nineveh Plain (Hamdaniya, Tel Keif, etc.)

Tuesday, an Iraqi military source reported that joint Iraqi forces killed 3 Daesh members in a military operation in the Nimrud area of Hamdaniya. Col. Ahmed Al-Jubouri in the Ninewa Ops Command told the press that units from the Army, Ninewa Police, and PMF carried out the operation starting Tuesday morning, with backing from the Coalition air force. [Rudaw]

 

Ninewa Police Chief Watheq Al-Hamadani announced that a Daesh commander called “Ibrahim Yassin” was killed by a Coalition airstrike during a security operation in Juzur Al-Maqalat​​ (islands in the Tigris)​​ in Nimrud. Al-Hamadani added that security forces cleared the area and destroyed a number of Daesh guesthouses. [Sumaria]

 

Tuesday, the MoD announced the launch of a new military operation to hunt down Daesh members in​​ Juzur​​ Al-Maqalat. [BasNews]​​ The MoD announced​​ this initiative​​ on its Facebook page.​​ [Sumaria]

 

Mosul

Tuesday,​​ Al-Sharq Al-Awsat​​ newspaper warned of air pollution and contamination in the Tigris River in Mosul due to decaying Daesh bodies. The newspaper reported that​​ the​​ Manager of the Mosul Municipality, Abdulsattar Al-Habu,​​ warned that if the bodies are not removed​​ soon, they will cause illnesses. Al-Habu said that over 450 Daesh bodies have been removed from underneath the rubble, but there are hundreds left. He added that Daesh stole and destroyed​​ most​​ of the local government’s equipment. [Sumaria]

 

On January 19th, the International Rescue Committee announced that its legal team is working with Iraqis in Mosul who had vital documents issued by Daesh, such as birth certificates and marriage certificates, which became invalidated after Daesh’s defeat, causing a myriad of legal struggles for the families with such records. [Mada] [Rescue]

 

Southern Ninewa

Hammam Al-Alil

Tuesday, an official in the Ninewa Police Intelligence reported the capture of two “officials” in “Diwan Al-Hisbah” and “Beit Al-Mal” of Daesh, Tareq Abu Islam and Ayman Waad Al-Jarjari, during a search operation in Al-Arij village in Hammam Al-Alil. Captain Alaa Al-Bayati clarified that security units found the two terrorists hiding an old house with a Mosul family.​​ [BasNews]​​ 

 

Qayara

Tuesday, a security source reported that security units found a mass grave containing decayed bodies of 20 civilians who were executed by Daesh in Al-Hawd village in Mosul’s Qayara subdistrict. The source added that a workshop containing 450 IEDs was also found in the same area. [Etejah]​​ 

 

Western​​ Ninewa

Sinjar

Tuesday, Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu told the press after returning from his visit to Iraq that the two countries are having discussions in order to carry out a joint operation against the PKK​​ in Sinjar. [Sumaria]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ There are logical reasons not to believe this statement.

 

SOUTHERN IRAQ

Babel

Tuesday, the Babel Police announced that security units in the governorate seized a suicide belt on the highway between Babel and Baghdad near the 18th​​ Bridge in Iskandariya. [Xendan]​​ 

 

KURDISTAN​​ NEWS

 

ERBIL

Tuesday, ROJ News reported that dozens of people in Erbil demonstrated against the ongoing Turkish operation in Afrin in front of the United Nations headquarters in Erbil, calling on the international community to break​​ its​​ silence and stop it.​​ [ROJ]

 

Tuesday, the KRG announced the arrival of KRG Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani​​ and​​ his delegation, including deputy​​ PM​​ Qubad Talabani, to Switzerland to participate in the World Economic Forum. [BasNews]

 

HALABJA

Tuesday, a security source in Halabja reported that armed clashes took place between an unknown armed group and security forces in the Halabja governorate. The source added that the armed group spoke Kurdish, and a search is underway to arrest them.​​ [Sumaria]

 

Tuesday, Kurdistan​​ security​​ officials​​ issued a statement concerning the armed group that clashed with the security units in Halabja. The statement noted that the Asayesh of Garmian and security centers in Bamo, Maidan, and Darbandikhan carried out an operation on Sunday evening to track the assailants and found a hideout in Bamo Mountain. It is suspected that the group belongs to Daesh.​​ The operation captured a hideout,​​ a​​ PKC,​​ 2​​ Kalashnikov machine guns, several ammunition and food boxes, RBG projectiles (17), and a bag of TNT.​​ [SotIraq]

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

Tuesday, Anadolu reported that 14 people were arrested, including Daesh senior leader Kifah Bashir Hussein. [Anadolu]

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS

 

The news in Syria is focused mainly on the Turkish invasion of Afrin, the district in Syria’s northwest corner. Detailed military information is under “Afrin” below.​​ 

 

United Nations.​​ Tuesday, the United Nations announced that the Turkish military operation in Afrin has caused the displacement of nearly 5,000 people as of Monday. The UN added that it is willing to provide assistance to about 50,000 people in Afrin, in addition to aiding​​ 30,000 IDPs from Aleppo. [Sumaria]

 

The UN​​ also​​ announced the displacement of over 126,000 persons from Afrin since the launch of Turkey’s military operation, adding that 300,000 more are under threat of displacement. Spokesman​​ for the Secretary​​ General Stéphane Dujarric said in a press release that approximately 60% of local residents are in need of aid. [Sumaria]

 

United States​​ reactions.​​ US Defense Secretary James Mattis​​ stated​​ that the Turkish aggression on Afrin is distracting from the war on Daesh in Syria, saying that the aggression “disperses efforts to defeat Daesh in Syria.” Mattis added, “this can be exploited by Al-Qaeda.” [Hawar]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Mr. Secretary, we think you are doing a great job in general, and we agree completely with this point, but we feel the need to point out that this statement on Tuesday contradicted the statement you issued on Monday to justify​​ American​​ non-interference.​​ 

 

Tuesday, an unnamed high-level US official announced that the US sent a letter to Turkey urging them to limit the incursion into Afrin as much as possible. The source added that there are communications between officials in the US Administration and Turkish officials at the military and political levels, in addition to the Foreign Ministry and officials close to Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The source added that “we want to guarantee no presence of any party that would allow the brutal Assad​​ regime to return again to Afrin.”​​ [Rudaw]

 

European reactions.​​ France expressed its concern over the continued Turkish​​ incursion in Afrin Province. French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said “I had the opportunity to inform my Turkish counterpart​​ . . .​​ that this attack worries us.” [Hawar]

 

Germany’s​​ Left Party called for protests against the Turkish aggression on Afrin, calling the​​ invasion​​ a “crime.” The Left Party also called on​​ the​​ German​​ government​​ to stop exporting German arms to Turkey. [Hawar]

 

However, Dutch Foreign Minister Halbe Zijlstra said on Tuesday that there is “sufficient evidence” that Turkey has been subjected to intense attacks and has the right to defend itself,​​ and​​ that Operation Olive Branch is legitimate and in accordance with international law. Zijlstra, member of a right-wing party,​​ also stressed that his government has never supported the PYD, saying that they are not innocent and that the PYD has attacked Turkey intensely. [Anadolu]

 

Other reactions.​​ Qatar expressed its support for the Turkish attack on the Kurdish People’s Protection Units​​ (YPG)​​ in Afrin. Monday, Lu’lu’a Al-Khater, spokesperson of the Qatar Foreign Ministry said that the Turkish intervention was motivated by Turkey’s national and border security, in addition to protecting the unity of the Syrian territory from partition. [Rudaw]

 

The Iraqi Turkmen Front said on Tuesday that Operation Olive Branch “will bring peace and stability to the Middle East,” according to head of the Turkmen Front, Arshad Salhi. [Anadolu]

 

Turkish justifications.​​ Turkish President Recep Erdogan discussed with his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday the latest developments in the Syrian crisis and Operation Olive Branch. Erdogan assured Macron that the Operation Olive Branch process is being implemented within the framework of international laws, Article 51 of the Charter of the UN on the right of self-defense and the resolutions of the UN Security Council to combat terrorism. Erdogan stressed that the Turkish Army is taking the utmost care to spare civilian lives. [Anadolu]

 

Turkish Foreign Minister​​ Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu​​ said on Tuesday that Turkey “seeks to avoid any clash with the Syrian forces – the Assad regime – or the Russian, or American forces, but it will take all necessary steps to ensure Turkey’s security.”​​ Çavuşoğlu​​ added “the terrorists – the PYD militia – in Manbij is always firing provocative fire at Turkey and if the United States will not stop it, then we will stop it,” hinting that there is a possibility of expanding the Turkish operation to Manbij city.​​ Çavuşoğlu​​ said “whether it is Manbij, Afrin, the Euphrates, or even threats from northern Iraq, it does not matter. If there are terrorists on the other side of our border, that would be a threat to us.” [Dorar]

 

Chemical weapons issue

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres expressed concern about the reports of the use of chemical weapons in Syria again. [Anadolu]

 

Tuesday, the US pledged to use all available means to hold the Syrian government accountable for the use of chemical weapons in eastern Ghouta. “The reports of the use of chlorine gas against innocent civilians in eastern Ghouta by the Syrian government are further proof of the blatant disregard of the Syrian government of international laws and an indifference to the lives of the Syrian people” said US Ambassador to the US, Nikki Haley. [Anadolu]

 

In a conference on chemical weapons in Paris on Tuesday, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson held Russia responsible for the victims in Eastern Ghouta and the countless other Syrians targeted with chemical weapons. He​​ called​​ for the destruction of Syria’s entire stockpile of chemical weapons. [Hawar]

 

Anti-Daesh​​ military​​ campaign

Tuesday, SOHR reported that 17 civilians, including 3 children and 5 women, and at least 35 Daesh members have been killed in Syria in Coalition airstrikes since December 23rd, 2017. [SyriaHR]​​ Most of these deaths were presumably in Albu Kamal, where the Coalition is supporting the SDF.

 

Post-Daesh Syrian governance

Al-Sharq Al-Awsat​​ newspaper published a draft​​ from​​ the Syrian National Dialogue Conference in Sochi which​​ has four​​ main​​ points:​​ (1)​​ the formation of a national army operating under the constitution,​​ (2)​​ the commitment of the​​ armed​​ services to law and human rights,​​ (3)​​ the need for the Assad government to emphasize national unity, and​​ (4)​​ providing fair representation for autonomous entities. UN Special Envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura​​ provided​​ 12​​ guiding​​ principles​​ for​​ a political solution,​​ in a move to help the Sochi conference gain legitimacy from the UN. The Sochi conference will be held on January 29 and 30. [Dorar]

 

Northwest

Afrin/Azaz

BasNews reported that on Tuesday there were ongoing violent clashes between the Turkish Army and​​ its allied militias and​​ the YPG​​ in border villages of Afrin. The clashes are centered in the​​ Jinderes​​ subdistrict​​ in southern Afrin, on the Turkish border, especially Hamam village, as the Turkish Army tries to advance​​ toward​​ Qurna village in Bulbul​​ subdistrict​​ in​​ northern​​ of Afrin. The source added that there were deaths within the Turkish Army and​​ its allied​​ opposition​​ militias. [BasNews]

 

Tuesday, the pro-Turkey militias and Turkish Army captured Umar Ushaghi village in​​ Shaykh Al-Hadeed​​ subdistrict,​​ in western Afrin by the Turkish border,​​ and Al-Hamam (Qashala) village and its surrounding hills in western​​ part of the​​ Jinderes subdistrict​​ in southern Afrin, also on the Turkish border. [Qasioun]​​ [EnabBaladi]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Turkish troops have a strategic advantage in Afrin, because Turkey’s boundary largely wraps around Afrin, with border area on the north, west, and south.​​ 

 

In a statement released on Tuesday, the Turkish General Staff announced that 260 PKK/KCK/PYD-YPG and Daesh terrorists have been “neutralized” since the beginning of Operation Olive Branch in Syria. The statement added that one Turkish officer was killed in clashes in Umar Ushaghi village, raising the number of Turkish soldiers killed to 3 since the beginning of Operation Olive Branch in Syria.​​ [Anadolu]

 

The Turkish Chief of Staff​​ earlier​​ announced the death of one Turkish soldier as part of Operation Olive Branch, saying that he was killed in clashes with the PKK/YPG​​ and Daesh terrorists. He indicated​​ that only one Turkish soldier had been killed since the beginning of the Turkish aggression on Afrin on Saturday. [Anadolu]

Tuesday, Turkish Foreign Minister​​ Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu announced the death of a second soldier in the​​ Afrin​​ military operation. The​​ YPG claims the​​ number​​ of Turkish military deaths is much higher.​​ [BasNews]

 

Tuesday, Hawar reported​​ that clashes are still ongoing between the YPG and the Turkish forces in the vicinity of Quda village in Rajo subdistrict, following a YPG special operation against the Turkish forces there that killed 6 Turkish soldiers. [Hawar]

 

According to military sources, Hawar News reported on Tuesday that 53 Turkish soldiers were killed, and about 38 others were wounded during clashes with the YPG in the villages of Qura Baba, Qastal Jando and Qurna in Shara subdistrict​​ in northern Afrin​​ and in some locations in Azaz, including Kaljibrin. [Hawar]

 

Hawar reports that Turkish soldiers tried to infiltrate​​ YPG​​ positions in Jijan village in​​ Azaz​​ at 1:30​​ am on Tuesday. The Turkish soldiers were confronted by the​​ YPG​​ and clashes ensued, resulting in the killing of 15 Turkish soldiers. [Hawar]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Just as we are forced to discount Anadolu reports as having limited reliability due to its pro-government loyalties, we have to do the same with reports by pro-PYD Hawar. It’s like trying to discern the truth from dueling propaganda.

 

Tuesday, the PYD’s autonomous Kurdish administration in “west Kurdistan” (Northern Syria) called on all Kurds in Syria to defend Afrin. [BasNews]

 

Manbij

Tuesday,​​ Haitham Al-Afisi,​​ the deputy chief of staff of the “National Army,” (established by the​​ Turkey-allied​​ Syrian​​ opposition)​​ said that they​​ are completing their final preparation for the battle in SDF-held Manbij, as an extension of the current “Operation Olive Branch” in Afrin.​​ [Arabi21]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ This is one major reason why caving to Erdogan over Afrin was a bad idea. Erdogan has no intention of stopping in Afrin. Taking Manbij is a long-standing objective, as documented by many news reports in Daesh Daily. The US placed some of its own troops in the Manbij area earlier to discourage this. Now the Turks are angling for it again, and again using its militia allies as proxies. As in Afrin,​​ the question is whether the US will​​ stand up or roll over. This time we would not have the excuse that Manbij has been uninvolved in the anti-Daesh campaign, as Manbij’s fight against Daesh was heroic.​​ 

 

Northeast (Hasaka, Raqqa)

Raqqa

Raqqa city & district

Tuesday, CNN broadcast the remarkable story of a Yazidi-Iraqi child who was held captive by an American woman who had joined Daesh and became known as “Um Yousef.” The child, Ayham Elias, was abducted by Daesh when he was 4 and spent nearly three years in Raqqa. While in Raqqa, Ayham was told he was to kill Yazidi people. Now 8 years old, he is conflicted between his biological Yazidi family and Um Yousef (or Sam) who raised him for half of his life. He speaks good English and hopes to travel to the US. [Sumaria] [CNN]

 

Central and West​​ 

Aleppo/Idlib

Tuesday, Qasioun reported that the Syrian forces, under the cover of Russian airstrikes, recaptured the Abu Al-Dhuhur military airport, following fierce battles with Syrian opposition forces​​ including Tahrir Al-Sham.​​ Violent clashes are still ongoing in Abu​​ Al-Dhuhur village near​​ the​​ airport in an attempt by the Syrian forces to capture the village.​​ [Qasioun]

 

In a report released Monday on the Syrian forces’ losses in the ongoing battles in rural Hama, Idlib, and Aleppo, Tahrir Al-Sham said that it killed more than 350 members of the Syrian forces, wounded more than 400, and captured 37 others. It​​ says it​​ also destroyed 6 tanks and 5 armored vehicles, and shot down two reconnaissance aircraft and an “L39” warplane.​​ [Qasioun]

 

Hama

Daesh issues a video of targeting a Syrian Army cannon with a rocket east of Hama on Monday. [A3maq]

 

Latakia

According to a military source, SANA reported that the Syrian forces foiled a Tahrir Al-Sham attack on some of the Syrian forces’ positions in Al-Sarraf village in Rabia subdistrict in rural northern Latakia, killing 13 members of Tahrir Al-Sham, and destroying their weapons and ammunition. [SyriaNow]

 

East (Deir Ez-Zor)

Albu Kamal

Tuesday, SOHR reported that fierce clashes are ongoing between the SDF and Daesh in Gharanij. Meanwhile, SOHR reported that 14 SDF members have been killed recently during the ongoing clashes with Daesh in Gharanij, accompanied by mutual shelling. [SyriaHR]

 

The Coalition announced on Tuesday that Coalition precision strikes killed between 145 and 150 Daesh members in Sha’afa, north of Albu Kamal on January 20. The Coalition says there was a high concentration of Daesh members in Sha’afa as Daesh had a headquarters there. Commanding General of Special Operations Joint Task Force–Operation Inherent Resolve, Maj. Gen. James​​ Jarrard, says these “strikes underscore our assertion that the fight to liberate Syria is far from over.” [Defense]

 

Tuesday, Hawar reported that violent clashes broke out between the SDF and Daesh, after the SDF foiled a number of Daesh attacks on its positions in Gharanij and Hajin. [Hawar]

 

Daesh says it killed five SDF fighters and captured 2 military positions in an attack on Gharanij. [A3maq]

Daesh says its snipers killed four SDF fighters in Gharanij. [ICDNJan23]

Daesh publishes photos of targeting SDF positions in Gharanij with shells and with heavy machine guns. [ICDNJan23]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ We would be the last to find credibility in Daesh reports, but the multiplicity of reports over the past few days about Daesh attacks on the SDF in Albu Kamal–without any news reports from the SDF side—raises serious concern. The SDF has never been bashful about issuing reports on its activities, which adds to the concern. ​​ 

 

Daesh publishes photos of battles in Bahra village. [ICDNJan23]

 

Daesh issues a propaganda video about its wounded and disabled terrorists in the Albu Kamal area. The video shows some of those terrorists conducting suicide attacks. [ICDNJan23]

 

South​​ 

Damascus/Rif Damashq​​ 

Tuesday, SOHR reported that the Syrian forces shelled locations in Douma city in Eastern Ghouta, killing​​ two​​ civilians and wounding at least​​ seven​​ others, raising the total number of civilians killed by​​ Syrian forces’ aerial and artillery bombardment of Eastern Ghouta since December 29th, 2017, to 224, including 57 children and 40 women. [SyriaHR]

 

Daesh says its snipers killed a Syrian soldier in Hay Al-Tadhamun, south of Damascus. [A3maq]

 

Daesh says it killed an opposition fighter in clashes in Hay Al-Zain, south of Damascus, on Monday. [ICDNJan23]

 

Daraa

Tuesday, Qasioun reported that the Syrian opposition factions, participating in the “Repelling the Aggressors” operations room, said they​​ thwarted​​ an attempt by Daesh’s affiliate, Jaish Khalid Ibn Al-Waleed, to infiltrate into Hait town, northwest of Daraa, killing a member of Jaish Khalid and wounding two others. [Qasioun]

 

OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS

 

Neighboring countries

Iran

Tuesday, top Military Aide to the Iranian Supreme Leader,​​ Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi,​​ suggested the establishment of a regional Coalition to include Iran, Russia, Syria, Iraq, and Pakistan. [Sumaria]

 

North Africa

Egypt

Tuesday, Egyptian police​​ defeated​​ an ambush by an armed group in Al-Abour neighborhood, according to eyewitnesses, southeast of Arish. [ElWatan]

 

A security source says that 3 members of the Egyptian Police were wounded in an ambush on​​ police positions by unidentified gunmen in Al-Atalawi Square in Arish. [ElWatan]

 

The Second Field Army Law Enforcement Forces in Northern Sinai, in cooperation with the Airforce, destroyed a number of​​ hideouts​​ used by​​ takfiri​​ terrorists, destroyed a four-wheel-drive vehicle bomb, and destroyed 6 IEDs. [AhlMisr]

 

Libya

Medical sources say a​​ double​​ vehicle bomb explosion in Benghazi​​ has killed at least 33 people. The death toll has been rising.​​ 

Initial reports said​​ two people​​ were killed and three​​ wounded next​​ to​​ the​​ Ad-Radwan​​ Mosque in the Al-Salmani​​ neighborhood in the center of the city. [AfriGate]

A​​ spokesman for the Libyan Grand Security Chamber,​​ Lt. Tareq Al-Kharraz,​​ says there was a second explosion near the​​ mosque. [Wasat]

 

REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES

 

AUSTRALIA

Tuesday, the​​ New York Times​​ reported that Australian​​ security​​ officials​​ accused a former government employee of transferring​​ $30,000​​ to​​ Daesh. [NYT] [Ghad]

 

AFRICA

Somalia​​ 

Daesh says it shot and killed the finance officer of Afgooye city. [A3maq]

Daesh issues a video of the assassination. [A3maq]​​ 

 

Niger​​ 

Daesh publishes photos of the attack by its Nigerian affiliate Boko Haram on a military base in Toumour village in Niger. [ICDNJan23]

 

ASIA

Afghanistan

Daesh says it assassinated a Taliban member in the Bati Kot District in eastern Nangarhar, on Monday. [A3maq]

Here Daesh says it shot and killed 3 Taliban members in 2 areas in Nangarhar on Monday. [ICDNJan23]

 

Philippines

The Philippine National Police arrested an Iraqi national described as a “rocket scientist” affiliated with Hamas. According to​​ Agence FrancePresse, Iraq previously informed the Philippines that Taha Mohammed Al-Jubouri was overstaying his visa in the Philippines, and authorities​​ apprehended​​ him last Sunday. [Sumaria]

January 22, 2018