Monday (7.24.17)

  • A Taliban suicide attacker detonated a car bomb in the western part of Kabul on Monday, killing up to 35 people and wounding more than 40, government officials said, in one of the worst attacks in the Afghan capital in recent weeks.
  • A man armed with a chainsaw wounded at least five people, two of them seriously, on Monday in a small Swiss town that was then put into lockdown as police hunted for the suspect. The attack happened inside an office building on a shopping street in the center of Schaffhausen, a medieval town of 36,000 inhabitants on the German border, police said. Police said the attack was "not an act of terror".
  • Malian and French troops have arrested a close associate of a preacher whose jihadist group has claimed dozens of attacks against Western and Malian targets, Mali's security minister said on Sunday.
  • Egyptian security forces have killed eight suspected Islamist terrorists belonging to the Hasm movement in what officials said was a training camp in a southern desert region, the interior ministry said on Sunday.
  • The son of Mullah Haibatullah, the emir of the Afghan Taliban, killed himself in a suicide attack that targeted Afghan forces in the southern province of Helmand. It is unusual for the sons of leaders of jihadist groups to serve as suicide bombers, however the sons of senior leaders have served as military commanders and in other capacities.
  • The US State Department said that al Qaeda’s branch in East Africa has prospered over the past year “due largely to lapses in offensive counterterrorism operations during 2016.” Additionally, State noted that Somali security forces “remained incapable of securing and retaking towns from al-Shabaab independently.”
  • A U.S. Army sergeant stationed in Hawaii has been indicted on charges of trying to provide material support to ISIS, allowing the case to move to a federal trial without a preliminary hearing, officials said on Saturday. Ikaika Erik Kang, 34, is being held in jail and is scheduled to appear in court in Honolulu on Monday to face charges. He was arrested on July 8.
  • The United States will withhold $50 million remaining in military reimbursements to Pakistan for fiscal year 2016 because Defense Secretary Jim Mattis believes that Islamabad has not done enough to blunt the Islamist militant Haqqani network, a U.S. official said on Friday.
  • Since July 2011, the US Treasury and State Department have repeatedly stated that the Iranian regime allows al Qaeda to maintain a key facilitation network on its soil. This formerly clandestine network is the result of a specific “agreement” between the Iranian government and al Qaeda’s leadership. On July 19, the State Department once again pointed to the relationship. It stated that “Iran has allowed AQ facilitators to operate a core facilitation pipeline through the country, enabling AQ to move funds and fighters to South Asia and Syria.”

Tuesday (7.25.17)

  • The Taliban claimed credit for a suicide attack in the Afghan capital of Kabul that killed scores of people. The Afghan government said all of those killed were civilians, while the Taliban claimed its assault killed “intelligence officers.”
  • India's federal counter-terrorism agency arrested seven members of Kashmir's main separatist alliance, Hurriyat, on Monday on charges of receiving funds from Pakistan-based militant groups to wage attacks, the agency said, the first such case against the group. The Hurriyat is an umbrella group of political and religious groups fighting for Kashmir's secession from India.
  • John Booker Jr., 22, of Topeka, Kansas was sentenced on Monday to 30 years in federal prison for plotting a failed suicide bombing at a U.S. military base on behalf of ISIS in April 2015, federal prosecutors said.
  • Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain have added nine entities and nine individuals to their individual ban lists because of alleged links to Qatar over terrorism, Saudi's state news agency SPA reported on Tuesday. The four Arab states, who isolated Qatar by cutting all diplomatic and transport links with it in early June, already have put dozens of figures linked to the country on blacklists.
  • Famine could soon strike tens of thousands of people in northeast Nigeria as food stocks run low, prices soar and aid supplies dwindle due to the Boko Haram terrorist group, a leading humanitarian agency said on Monday. The jihadist group's eight-year insurgency to create an Islamic state in northeast Nigeria has killed more than 20,000 people and forced 2.7 million people to flee their homes.
  • The Yemeni Houthi terrorist group (officially known as Ansar Allah) claimed it fired a ‘Burkan-2’ ballistic missile at a Saudi Arabian oil refinery in the coastal town of Yanbu. The Houthis said that this is a new phase in the conflict with Saudi Arabia and that more refineries will be hit unless “the brutal aggression in Yemen stops.”
  • Two Jordanians died and an Israeli wounded during a shooting on Sunday in the compound of the heavily-guarded Israeli embassy, police and a security source said. Tensions have escalated between the two countries since Israel installed metal detectors at entry points to Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem after two Israeli policemen were shot dead by three Arab-Israeli gunmen on Friday near the site. The new security measures have triggered the bloodiest spate of Israeli-Palestinian violence for years. On Tuesday, Israel removed metal detectors from entrances to the Aqsa mosque, but Palestinians said the modified security measures were still unacceptable.

Wednesday (7.26.17)

  • The Afghan Taliban has overrun three districts previously held by the Afghan government in the provinces of Paktia, Faryab and Ghor over the past several days. The Taliban is demonstrating that it can sustain operations in all theaters of Afghanistan.
  • As Hezbollah continues to advance in the Jurud Arsal area of Lebanon, it has issued an ultimatum to surrender to the Sunni jihadists who remain. Hezbollah’s enemies are part of Hay’at Tahrir al Sham (“Assembly for the Liberation of the Levant,” or HTS), which includes the al Qaeda branch formerly known as Jabhat al Nusrah. In addition, Hezbollah claimed to capture several more areas of the Jurud Arsal region.
  • The European Union's top court kept the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas on the EU terrorism blacklist on Wednesday and removed Sri Lankan separatist rebels, the Tamil Tigers. Judges at the European Court of Justice (ECJ) overruled the General Court's view of 2014 that the Council of the European Union, the 28-nation grouping, had insufficient evidence to maintain asset freezes and travel bans on Hamas.
  • Algerian police have broken up an ISIS terrorist cell led by a former al Qaeda commander convicted in France more than a decade ago for planning an attempted bombing in Strasbourg, a security source said on Wednesday.
  • Taliban fighters killed 30 soldiers in an attack on an army base in the southern province of Kandahar, an army spokesman said on Wednesday, as heavy fighting raged across the country. The attack came after days of fierce fighting across Afghanistan and underlined the steadily deteriorating security in much of the country.
  • Suspected Boko Haram terrorists kidnapped 10 geological researchers from the University of Maiduguri in northeast Nigeria on Tuesday, said a spokesman for the state oil company that had contracted the academics. Nigeria relies on oil for two-thirds of its revenue. The state oil company is trying to reduce its reliance on crude from the southern Niger Delta where terrorist attacks cut production by more than a third in 2016.
  • As people return home to Mosul and other areas of northern Iraq freed from ISIS, homemade bombs and explosives laid on an industrial scale by the insurgents are claiming hundreds of victims and hampering efforts to bring life back to normal. Since clearing operations began last October, about 1,700 people have been killed or injured by such explosives, according to the United Nations Mines Action Service, which co-ordinates the clearing campaign.

Thursday (7.27.17) 

  • Hay’at Tahrir al Sham (HTS), a terrorist organization in Syria which includes al Qaeda’s branch in the country, released a video earlier today showing its forces in western Syria shooting down an armed Hezbollah drone. The drone was being used as part of a current Hezbollah-led offensive in both western Qalamoun and in the Jurud Arsal area of Lebanon.
  • Egypt established a national council for combating terrorism on Wednesday, giving it broad authority to set policies aimed at "fighting extremism," a presidential decree stated. Egypt has been battling an ISIS-led insurgency in the Sinai Peninsula that has killed hundreds of soldiers and police officers since 2013, though attacks have increasingly moved into the mainland in recent months.
  • Afghan security forces on Wednesday recovered two Pakistani diplomatic officials who were kidnapped in Afghanistan's eastern province of Nangahar, Pakistan’s foreign ministry said. The two Pakistani officials were abducted on June 16 as they traveled by road back to their homeland.  Afghan government forces are fighting both the main Taliban and terrorists loyal to ISIS for control of territory in Nangarhar.
  • Nigeria's military has rescued all members of an oil survey team kidnapped by suspected Boko Haram terrorists, it said in a statement on Wednesday, after they were taken in the country's conflict-ridden northeast. However, the corpses of nine soldiers and a civilian were also recovered during the rescue, the military said.
  • Al Shabaab terrorists detonated an improvised explosive device targeting a Somali National Army convoy traveling to Bulogud town near Kismayo, Lower Jubba region, southern Somalia on Wednesday. Al Shabaab claimed to kill and wound U.S. and African Union Mission in Somalia forces traveling in the convoy.
  • A Massachusetts man charged with conspiring in an ISIS-inspired plot to behead a woman who had organized a 2015 competition featuring cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed was due in court on Wednesday. David Daoud Wright has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
  • Libya forces allied with UN-backed government who last year defeated ISIS in Sirte are increasing patrols to stop the terrorists regrouping and threatening to launch attacks on the port city of Misrata, a military commander said. ISIS took over the city in 2015 taking advantage of Libya's political chaos.
  • A German Islamist preacher was sentenced on Wednesday to 5-1/2 years in prison on four counts of supporting a foreign terrorist organization. Prosecutors said Sven Lau served as an "extended arm" of the Jaish al-Muhajireen wal-Ansar, a terrorist group made up of around 1,500 Chechen, Uzbek and Tajik fighters, which in 2015 pledged allegiance to the Nusra Front, an al Qaeda affiliate.