The Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center's Spotlight on Global Jihad - June 2 -8, 2022
Main events of the week
- Decrease in the volume of ISIS activity around the globe.
- Israel: As part of the lessons learned following the terrorist attacks in Beersheba and Hadera, the Israeli security forces will monitor dozens of Israeli Arabs convicted of supporting ISIS who are due to be released from prison in the near future.
- The Sinai Peninsula: The Egyptian army and the Sinai Tribal Union continued to mop up the area west of Rafah and the Sheikh Zuweid region from the presence of ISIS operatives. ISIS managed to carry out only one attack.
- Syria: Three Syrian soldiers and a civilian were killed in a bus bombing in the desert region about 30 km southwest of Deir ez-Zor. ISIS was apparently behind the attack.
- Iraq: The number of ISIS attacks remained relatively low. Most of the attacks were concentrated in the Diyala Province. At the same time, the Iraqi security forces detained senior ISIS operatives.
- Afghanistan: ISIS operatives activated an IED against a Taliban vehicle in the city of Kabul. Five people on board were killed or wounded.
- Africa, Nigeria: An IED exploded during an annual festival held at an open market in the town of Idoji, in Kogi State, in central Nigeria. At least two people were killed and several others were wounded. ISIS’s West Africa Province claimed responsibility for the attack. In Mozambique, ISIS continued to attack Christian villages in the northeastern province of Cabo Delgado. In the Democratic Republic of Congo, ISIS carried out massacres in two Christian villages about 50 km from the border with Uganda.
- India: Al-Qaeda is threatening to carry out suicide bombing attacks in light of statements by senior Indian government officials against the Prophet Muhammad.
- According to a senior Israeli police officer, dozens of Israeli Arabs who have been convicted of supporting ISIS and will soon be released from prison will now be under surveillance by the security forces. A senior defense official added that the police, the Israel Security Agency, and the Prison Service decided to do so after it became evident that the terrorists who carried out the attacks in Hadera and Beersheba in March 2022 were known to the police and had even served prison sentences but were not under surveillance after their release. About 40 Israeli Arab citizens convicted of supporting ISIS are scheduled to be released from prison soon and are liable to carry out terrorist attacks in the future (Israel Today, June 1, 2022).
The Sinai Peninsula
- This week, the Egyptian army and the Sinai Tribal Union concentrated their efforts on combing the area west of Rafah and the Sheikh Zuweid region. ISIS managed to carry out only one attack.
- On June 5, 2022, the Egyptian army and the Sinai Tribal Union launched an operation to mop up the villages west of Rafah and in the Sheikh Zuweid region. Two Sinai Tribal Union fighters were killed and two others were wounded west of Rafah (Akhbar Sinaa al-Aan Facebook page, June 5, 2022). ISIS’s Sinai Province claimed responsibility for the incident, noting that during exchanges of machine gun fire with Sinai Tribal Union forces on the outskirts of the village of Balaa, west of Rafah, its operatives killed two fighters and wounded several others (Telegram, June 5, 2022).
The Syrian arena
The Idlib region
- On June 4, 2022, there were heavy exchanges of fire between the rebel forces and the Syrian army and the forces supporting it in the eastern region of the rebel enclave in Idlib. No casualties have been reported (Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, June 4, 2022).
- On May 30, 2022, the European Union decided to include Hurras al-Din (the Guardians of Religion Organization), Al-Qaeda’s arm in Syria, the organization’s leader Faruq al-Suri, and the organization’s religious leader Sami al-Aridi in the list of persons and entities sanctioned for their links to ISIL/Daesh and Al-Qaeda (agenceurope.eu, May 31, 2022).
The desert region (Al-Badia)
- On June 4, 2022, ISIS operatives attacked a bus in the desert region, about 30 km southwest of Deir ez-Zor. Three soldiers and a civilian were killed and about 20 other passengers were wounded, including both civilians and soldiers (Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, June 4, 2022).
- An IED was activated against a vehicle of one of the pro-Iranian militias in the southern desert region of the Deir ez-Zor Province. No casualties have been reported and no one has claimed responsibility for the incident (Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, June 5, 2022).
- On June 1-3, 2022, the Russian Air Force carried out six offensive sorties against ISIS targets in the desert region (Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, June 3, 2022).
The Al-Hasakah region
- The SDF forces detained four ISIS operatives south of Al-Hasakah. The four used to assist ISIS logistically and provide the organization’s operatives with weapons and ammunition (Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, June 1, 2022).
The Iraqi arena
This week as well, ISIS’s attacks in Iraq remained relatively few in number. Attacks took place mainly in the Diyala Province. At the same time, Iraqi security forces detained senior ISIS operatives.
- According to official Iraqi sources, the Kurdish SDF forces transferred 50 ISIS operatives from Syria to Iraq (Al-Hurra, June 1, 2022).
- Two attacks were carried out in the Diyala Province: IEDs were detonated against police and army vehicles. Over 10 people were killed or wounded.
Counterterrorism measures in Iraq
- The Iraqi army announced that 14 ISIS operatives, including senior ones, had been detained in the Baghdad Province in a series of arrests based on precise intelligence (Khaliyat al-I’lam al-Amni Facebook page, June 5, 2022).
- According to an Iraqi security source, a senior ISIS operative (emir) codenamed Abu Qatar al-Iraqi was detained on May 2, 2022, on the outskirts of Baghdad, during an attempt to infiltrate the city (Shafaq News, June 2, 2022). It should be noted that Baghdad has been enveloped by checkpoints and a variety of other security measures in view of the deadly attacks carried out by ISIS in the city over the past few years.
- The Iraqi army announced that four ISIS operatives had been killed on June 5, 2022, in an Iraqi airstrike in the Al-Anbar Province. In addition, a truck carrying ISIS weapons was destroyed (Iraqi Defense Ministry, June 5, 2022)
Summary of ISIS’s activity in the various provinces
- An infographic published by ISIS, summing up its activity around the world in the period between May 26 and June 1, 2022, indicates that the organization carried out 36 attacks in its various provinces around the globe (compared to 56 in the previous week). The largest number of attacks was carried out in the Iraq Province (13). Attacks carried out in the other provinces: West Africa (8); Khorasan, i.e., Afghanistan (7); Mozambique (3); Syria (2); Central Africa (2); and Somalia (1). A total of 84 people were killed or wounded in the attacks, compared to 204 in the previous week. The largest number of casualties was in the West Africa Province (31). The other casualties were in the following provinces: Central Africa (22); Iraq (14); Khorasan (12); Somalia (3); and Syria (2) (Al-Naba weekly, Telegram, June 2, 2022).
ISIS attacks by week (according to ISIS data)
- African Coalition forces reported that since early March 2022, the beginning of the operation against ISIS’s West Africa Province and Boko Haram in the Lake Chad region, the coalition forces have killed 805 operatives of these organizations (punchng.com, June 2, 2022).
- Senior Boko Haram commander Ummate Ma was ambushed and killed on June 1, 2022, by ISIS operatives in the Lake Chad region in northeastern Nigeria, in the fighting between the two organizations. The commander was on his way to Cameroon, and some of his escorts were killed along with him (leadership.ng, June 4, 2022).
- ISIS’s West Africa Province has concentrated its activity in Kogi State in central Nigeria, and in Borno State in the northeast of the country.
- In Kogi State, there were two IED attacks in which at least two people were killed and more than 10 were wounded.
- In Borno State, there were nine attacks in which 10 Nigerian soldiers were killed and several others were wounded. Two local militiamen were also killed. Equipment was damaged and weapons were seized. The Nigerian Air Force killed at least 13 operatives and wounded several others on June 6, 2022, after operatives blocked the Maiduguri-Damaturu highway and abducted drivers and passengers in cars traveling on the highway. During the attack, five abductees managed to escape (prnigeria.com, June 6, 2022).
- Abduction by the Ansaru organization: On May 31, 2022, a group of armed men, apparently operatives of the Al-Qaeda-affiliated Ansaru organization, most of whose operatives are former Boko Haram operatives, stopped a convoy in the Kaduna region, about 140 km north of the capital Abuja, and abducted dozens of convoy passengers. The organization recently stepped up its activity and there are reports that its operatives are collaborating with criminal elements in the region (theeagleonline.com.ng, June 2, 2022).
Democratic Republic of the Congo
- ISIS’s Central Africa Province carried out three attacks against Congolese soldiers. Two soldiers were killed, property and equipment were damaged, and weapons were seized.
- Attacks against Christian residents:
- On the night of June 5-6, 2022, a total of 36 people were murdered in an attack against the Christian village of Bwanasura in the Ituri region, about 50 km from the Congo-Uganda border. The attack was apparently carried out by operatives of the ISIS-affiliated ADF organization (AFP, June 6, 2022).
- On May 29, 2022, ISIS operatives attacked the Christian village of Bulongo, in the Rwenzori region of eastern Congo, not far from the border with Uganda. They killed 20 civilians and set fire to six trucks (Telegram, May 31, 2022). Official sources confirmed the report, adding that the assailants, apparently ADF operatives, also stole property from homes in the village (Reuters, May 31, 2022).
- Operatives of ISIS’s Mozambique Province attacked Christian villages in a series of incidents in the Cabo Delgado Province in northeastern Mozambique. One person was killed and dozens of homes were set on fire.
- On June 3, 2022, Al-Qaeda claimed responsibility for attacking a group of Togolese soldiers on the Togo-Burkina Faso border on May 11, 2022. Eight soldiers were killed and 13 others were wounded. This is the first attack carried out by Al-Qaeda operatives in Togo, and the incident is liable to lead to the expansion of the organization’s activity into Togo (north-africa.com, June 3, 2022).
- One attack was carried out in which a policeman was wounded.
- ISIS’s Khorasan Province announced that it had carried out six attacks against Taliban members throughout the country. Three Taliban members were killed and nine others were killed or wounded. Property was also damaged.
- Philippine security forces killed an ISIS operative in an exchange of fire on June 1, 2022, and detained another operative in the Cotabato Province in the southern Philippines. The two operatives were involved in recent terrorist attacks in the country (AP, June 2, 2022).
- A court in India sentenced an ISIS supporter to life imprisonment after convicting him of planning brutal ISIS-inspired executions of foreign nationals. The accused, Mohd Mosiuddin, AKA Musa, was arrested in 2016 (thehindu.com, June 3, 2022).
- Following statements made by two representatives of the ruling party in the country against the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad, which caused a furor in the Arab and Islamic world, Al-Qaeda threatened to carry out suicide bombing attacks throughout India. The threat was made in a statement by the Al-Qaeda branch in the Indian subcontinent that was published on social media (ndiatoday.in, June 7, 2022).
- A court in Rotterdam sentenced a 28-year-old Dutch citizen, Ilham B., to three-and-a-half years in prison for joining ISIS. She joined ISIS with her husband in 2013, moved to Syria, and was captured by SDF forces. She was later extradited to the Netherlands (telegraaf.nl, June 1, 2022).
- Five Tajik nationals who are ISIS operatives and had planned to assassinate a German citizen who had criticized Islam two years ago were sentenced by a German court to up to nine and a half years in prison. The five, aged 25-34, were apprehended by German police shortly before carrying out the attack (DPA, May 31, 2022).
The United States
- Dilkhayot Kasimov, 34, a Brooklyn resident and citizen of Uzbekistan, was sentenced in the United States to 15 years in prison for financing terrorist activity. According to the indictment, in 2015 he raised money to finance a trip to Syria by an ISIS supporter who wanted to join the fighting in the ranks of ISIS (US Department of Justice website, June 3, 2022).
The battle for hearts and minds
- The editorial in this week’s issue of ISIS’s Al-Naba weekly was entitled “The truth about [the believer’s] standing to the test through jihad” and emphasizes the value of jihad as an expression of sacrifice for the sake of religion and adherence to faith. According to the article, Allah puts man to the test in order to examine the depth of his faith, and jihad is a test of faith so that he who does not take part in it and is not willing to sacrifice himself and give of himself within the framework of jihad does not stand the test of faith. The author ends the article by claiming that the jihad fighters are a lamp that illuminates the way for future generations and they are the greatest devotees of Allah (Al-Naba, Telegram, June 2, 2022). In the ITIC’s assessment, this is another attempt by ISIS to emphasize the importance of jihad to recruit fighters, in light of the signs of weakness that ISIS is displaying in a large portion of the arenas.
Details on ISIS attacks (according to ISIS’s claims of responsibility)
- On June 4, 2022, an IED was activated against a vehicle carrying policemen in the village of Durra, in the Al-Ibara region, in south Baqubah. Two policemen were wounded and the vehicle was put out of commission. A joint police and Tribal Mobilization force arriving on the scene was also attacked, by machine gun fire. Three fighters were killed and seven others, including an officer, were wounded (Telegram, June 5, 2022).
- On May 31, 2022, an IED was activated against an Iraqi army vehicle in the village of Al-Naqib, in the Bahraz region, about 2 km southeast of Baqubah. The passengers on board were killed or wounded (Telegram, June 1, 2022).
- On June 7, 2022, an Iraqi police post was targeted by gunfire in the Daquq region, in the southern part of the city of Kirkuk. A policeman was wounded (Telegram, June 7, 2022).
Nigeria (ISIS’s West Africa Province)
Kogi State, central Nigeria
- On June 2, 2022, an IED was activated during an annual festival in an open market in the town of Idoji. At least two people were killed and several others were wounded (thecable.ng, June 5, 2022). According to ISIS’s reports, 20 “Christian infidels” were killed and wounded in the incident (Telegram, June 4, 2022).
- On May 29, 2022, an IED exploded in a pub in the village of Kaba. A total of 10 people were wounded (kogireports.com, June 6, 2022). ISIS claimed that its operatives had activated an IED in a pub in the village where there was a group of “Christian infidels” (Telegram, May 31, 2022).
Borno State, northeastern Nigeria
- On June 6, 2022, passengers on the Mainok-Jakana road were abducted and several trucks carrying food were set on fire (the nationlineng.net, June 6, 2022).
- On June 5, 2022, a Nigerian army camp was targeted by machine gun fire in the town of Goniri. An armored vehicle was destroyed. No casualties have been reported (Telegram, June 5, 2022).
- On June 4, 2022, a Nigerian army base was attacked in the town of Marte, about 40 km west of the Nigeria-Cameroon border. The soldiers fled and the operatives seized three machine guns and ammunition (Telegram, June 5, 2022).
- On June 3, 2022, there were two attacks. Four mortar shells were fired at a Nigerian army camp in the town of Goniri. No casualties or damage have been reported (Telegram, June 3, 2022). A Nigerian army checkpoint was targeted by machine gun fire in the village of Mayeri. The checkpoint soldiers fled (Telegram, June 4, 2022).
- On June 1, 2022, three mortar shells were fired at a Nigerian army camp in the village of Fish Dam. According to ISIS, definite hits were identified (Telegram, June 3, 2022).
- On May 30, 2022, an IED was activated against a Nigerian army foot patrol between the villages of Katafila and Mararaba. Four soldiers were killed and several others were wounded (Telegram, June 1, 2022).
- On May 29, 2022, an IED was activated against a Nigerian army vehicle between the villages of Wulka and Goza, in Borno State. All six passengers on board the vehicle were killed (Telegram, May 31, 2022).
- On May 28, 2022, there were exchanges of fire with a local militia near the town of Damboa, about 80 km southwest of Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State. Two fighters were killed (Telegram, May 31, 2022).
Democratic Republic of the Congo (Central Africa Province)
- On June 4, 2022, a Congolese army camp was attacked in the Makoyoba region, near the town of Eringeti, about 50 km from the Congo-Uganda border. According to ISIS, the soldiers fled the camp and ISIS’s operatives seized an RPG launcher, a mortar and ammunition and set the camp on fire. In another incident on the same day, ISIS set fire to a building compound of the Congolese army in the town of Eringeti (Telegram, June 5, 2022).
- On June 1, 2022, a Congolese army camp was attacked in the Rwenzori region, not far from the border with Uganda. Two soldiers were killed and the rest fled. ISIS operatives seized weapons and ammunition (Telegram, June 1, 2022).
- ISIS’s Mozambique Province attacked Christian villages in the Cabo Delgado Province, in northeastern Mozambique.
- On June 5, 2022, the village of Nandoli, in the Anqawabi region, in Cabo Delgado, was attacked. One of the residents was executed and dozens of homes were set on fire (Telegram, June 5, 2022).
- On May 30, 2022, the village of Primeiro de Maio, in the Miloko region in Cabo Delgado, was attacked. Homes were set on fire (Telegram, May 31, 2022).
- A hand grenade was thrown at a Somali police checkpoint in Mogadishu. One policeman was wounded (Telegram, June 3, 2022).
Afghanistan (Khorasan Province)
- On June 3, 2022, two attacks took place. A sticky bomb was activated against a Taliban vehicle in the city of Sa’adabad, in the Kunar Province. Four Taliban members were killed and wounded, including a commander (Telegram, June 4, 2022). A Taliban member was shot and killed in the city of Pol-e Alam in the Logar Province, south of Kabul (Telegram, June 5, 2022).
- On June 2, 2022, a Taliban member was shot and killed in the Emam Saheb region in the Kunduz District (Telegram, June 3, 2022).
- On June 1, 2022, an IED was activated against a Taliban vehicle in the city of Kabul. All five passengers on board were killed or wounded (Telegram, June 1, 2022).
- On May 31, 2022, two stores owned by a Taliban commander were set on fire in the Achin region in the Nangarhar Province (Telegram, June 1, 2022).
- On May 30, 2022, the house of a Taliban “spy” in the Kunar Province was broken into and he was beheaded (Telegram, June 1, 2022).
 For details about the attacks, see the ITIC's publication from March 31, 2022: "Two deadly ISIS-inspired terrorist attacks carried out in southern and central Israel" ↑
 To use its official name: the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF), consisting of forces from Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon, Benin and Niger.