April 16, 2016  –  Special Announcements No.448  –  MEMRI

Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) Weekend Summary

The following are some of this week’s reports from the MEMRI Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) Project, which translates and analyzes content from sources monitored around the clock, among them the most important jihadi websites and blogs. (To view these reports in full, you must be a paying member of the JTTM; for membership information, send an email to jttmsubs@memri.org with “Membership” in the subject line.)

Note to media and government: For a full copy of these reports, send an email with the title of the report in the subject line to media@memri.org. Please include your name, title, and organization in your email.


EXCLUSIVE: Al-Shabab Video Documents The Raid On Kenyan Forces At El-Adde Base

On April 9, 2016, the Somalia-based jihad organization Al-Shabab Al-Mujahideen released a 48-minute video titled “The Sheikh Abu-Yahya Al-Libi Raid,” documenting the organization’s attack in mid-January this year on an AMISOM base in the town of Al-Adde in northern Somalia. The video, produced by the organization’s media wing Al-Kataeb, and released on the Twitter page of Al-Shabab’s news agency Al-Shahada and elsewhere, shows the capturing of the base from the Kenyan army units stationed there.


EXCLUSIVE: Report: Memo Reveals Tension Between ISIS Leadership And Military Commander Al-Shishani Shortly Before His Death In U.S. Airstrike

On April 8, 2016, the London-based Saudi daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat published a photocopy of a memo that allegedly details a meeting between two key Islamic State (ISIS) figures in Libya. The memo includes excerpts of what appears to be a recorded conversation between the two men, who are identified as Muhammad Al-Madhouni, ISIS’s leader in Libya, and Abu Omar Al-Qahtani, a prominent ISIS leader in the city of Sirte,


EXCLUSIVE: The Double Life Of An English-Speaking Female ISIS Supporter – Promoting ISIS Online, Hiding Beliefs From Family

An English-speaking woman, on Facebook, is a very vocal supporter of the Islamic State (ISIS) online, while at the same time expressing her struggle to hide her allegiance to the group from her family. She appears to be a university student of Pakistani origin, stating on her profile that she attends Western Sydney University, and seems to divide her time between Australia and Mauritius. On Facebook, she has expressed her desire to immigrate to Syria, and she shares ISIS propaganda on her account.


EXCLUSIVE: AQAP Commander Sa’d Al-Awlaqi Downplays Effectiveness Of U.S. Airstrikes In Yemen, Claims They Increase Recruitment


On April 6, 2016, Al-Masra, a weekly newspaper affiliated with Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), published an interview with Sa’d Al-Awlaqi, one of the group’s commanders. In the interview, Al-Awlaqi tackled many issues related to the war in Yemen, the effectiveness of U.S. air strikes, and AQAP’s current and future strategy.


EXCLUSIVE: Mexican ISIS Supporter Tweets Support For The Caliphate; Plans For An Islamic State In Mexico And Latin America


A Twitter user, who claims to be a Mexican ISIS supporter, tweets his support for the Islamic State, and expresses his desires that it expand to Mexico and Latin America. He also frequently discusses the Muslim population in Chiapas, Mexico.


EXCLUSIVE: ISIS: Sinai Will Become An Arena For War Against Egypt, Israel, Coalition Countries


The latest issue of Al-Naba, the weekly of the Islamic State (ISIS), features an article titled “Camp David in the Caliphate Era,” which boasts that ISIS’ military successes in Sinai have brought about the collapse of the Camp David Accords.


EXCLUSIVE: Two ISIS-Linked Groups In Southern Syria Join Ranks


On April 12, 2016, Harakat Al-Muthanna, a jihad group that operates in southern Syria and is known for its ties to the Islamic State (ISIS), announced that it had joined Liwa Shuhada’ Al-Yarmouk (the Yarmouk Martyrs’ Brigade), another ISIS affiliate operating in the region.


French ISIS Media Operatives’ Ongoing Online Campaign Calls For Lone Wolf Attacks, Threatens UK


On April 5, 2016, the An-Nur Media Group, which publishes official Islamic State (ISIS) material in French on Twitter, launched a media campaign calling for supporters to participate in the media battle and disseminate ISIS productions and documents.


ISIS German-Language Blog Disseminates ISIS Productions And Content – And Recruitment Information


The “Baqiyya Bleibt Bestehen! (Baqiya – will remain!)” website distributes official Islamic State (ISIS) content exclusively in German, and serves as a nexus for recruiting potential ISIS supporters and fighters. It is hosted on the U.S.-based platform WordPress.com, and was launched on April 20, 2015.


ISIS Claims It Tried To Assassinate A Syrian Journalist On Turkish Soil


On April 11, 2016, the Islamic State (ISIS), via its A’maq media agency claimed responsibility for the April 10 attempt to assassinate the Syrian journalist Zahir Al-Shirqat, in the Turkish city of Gaziantep on. The local Turkish media reports that Al-Shirqat is hospitalized in critical condition.


ISIS Releases Images Of Military Training Camp In Libya Named After Its Slain Leader


The Islamic State (ISIS) has released a series of images documenting training in one of its camps in Barqa province in eastern Libya. The camp is named after ISIS’s former “governor” in Libya, Abu Al-Mughira Al-Qahtani, who was killed in a U.S. airstrike last November. It shows fighters receiving physical and military training, and instruction in first aid.


Jabhat Al-Nusra Releases Video Interview With Captured Hizbullah Fighter


On April 13, 2016, Al-Manara Al-Baida, the official media wing of Jabhat Al-Nusra (JN), Al-Qaeda’s branch in Syria, released a video featuring an interview with Muhammad Yassin, a wounded Hizbullah fighter captured by JN in Al-Eis, south of Aleppo. In the short video, three minutes and 25 seconds in length, Yassin stated that he was born in 1990, is from the Lebanese village of Majdel Silim, joined Hizbullah in 2010, and was trained to be a fighter.


Jabhat Al-Nusra In Southern Damascus: We Kill Dozens Of ISIS Fighters Every Day


On April 11, 2016, Jabhat Al-Nusra supporter Abu ‘Abd Al-Malek Al-Shami tweeted an internal communique written by Jabhat Al-Nusra (JN) in Southern Damascus. The communique, which is titled “Hear from us and not from others talking about us” stresses that JN members in Southern Damascus are an inseparable part of the organization, and issue threats to the Islamic State (ISIS).


Video By Ansar Al-Shari’a In Libya Calls For Recruits Of All Backgrounds And Skills To Join Jihad


On April 11, 2016, the militant group Ansar Al-Shari’a in Libya (ASL) released a recruitment video calling on Muslims, particularly Libyans, of all backgrounds and skill sets to join the jihad. Titled “Go Forth, Whether Light or Heavy,” the video emphasizes Muslims’ obligation to wage jihad by fighting their enemies, and notes the various forms of support besides actual fighting on the battlefield that Muslims can provide to help the mujahideen and jihad.


Video Glorifies Uyghur TIP Fighters Killed In Syria

On April 8, 2016, the Sawt Al-Islam (Voice of Islam) media company, associated with the jihad group Turkestan Islamic Party (TIP), published the 17thinstallment in a series of videos titled “Those Who Love Paradise,” honoring TIP fighters killed in battle in Syria. TIP’s Uyghur fighters are operating in Syria alongside Jabhat Al-Nusra, mainly in the mountainous north-eastern part of the country.


Issue 14 Of ISIS Magazine Dabiq: ‘Paris Was A Warning; Brussels Was A Reminder’

On April 13, 2016, the Islamic State (ISIS) published the 14th issue of its English-language magazine Dabiq. The issue, released by ISIS’s media company Al-Hayat, celebrates the March 22, 2016 Brussels terror attacks and praises its perpetrators.


The issue’s Foreword justifies the Brussels attacks and promises more attacks to come. The opening article, titled “Knights of the Shahada In Belgium,” eulogizes four ISIS terrorists, three of whom were involved in the Brussels attacks.


In Issue 14 Of Dabiq Magazine, ISIS Calls Upon Its Supporters In The West To Kill Muslim Leaders


In an article the 14th issue of its English-language magazine Dabiq, the Islamic State (ISIS) called upon its supporters living in Western countries to kill Muslim leaders it deems to be apostates. The article mentions a list of Muslim clerics living in the U.S., the U.K., Australia, and Canada as appropriate targets, and labels them apostates in light of their opposition to ISIS or their alleged support of the Western governments’ efforts to combat it. It also marks a list of American Muslim Congressmen and political figures as well as British parliamentarians as targets for killing.


In Issue 14 Of ISIS Magazine Dabiq, Article By British Journalist John Cantlie Attacks U.S., U.K. Policy Against Negotiation With Terrorists, Blames Them For Death Of Their Citizens


Issue 14 of the Islamic State’s (ISIS) English-language magazine Dabiq, released online on April 13, featured an article by British journalist John Cantlie, who is imprisoned by the group, in which he attacks the U.S. and U.K. policy against negotiating with terrorists. Cantlie accuses the countries of being responsible for the death of their citizens by the Islamic State in 2014.


In Issue 14 Of ISIS Magazine Dabiq, Emir Of ISIS In Bangladesh Says: ‘We Believe Shari’a In… [Bangladesh] Won’t Be Achieved Until The Local Hindus Are Targeted In Mass Numbers’


Issue 14 of ISIS’s English-language magazine Dabiq features a long interview with Sheikh Abu Ibrahim Al-Hanif, the emir of the Islamic State in Bengal, or Bangladesh. Details about Al-Hanif are not known and the name appears to be an assumed name, as is the common practice among jihadis.


Issue 14 Of ISIS Magazine ‘Dabiq’ Pays Tribute To Bangladeshi Jihadi Radicalized By Anwar Al-Awlaki Who Forged Documents To Enter Syria


Issue 14 of the Islamic State (ISIS)s English-language magazine Dabiq pays tribute to a Bangladeshi jihadi, identified as Abu Jandal Al-Bangali, who grew up in Dhaka and later migrated to Syria to join ISIS, and who died fighting in Syria. Abu Jandal Al-Bangali may be an assumed name.

The two-page article devoted to him notes that he “came from an affluent family with deep connections in the Benga­li military” and that his father was a murtad [apostate] officer of the taghut forces.” According to the article, Abu Jandal’s father died in the 2009 Bangladeshi border guards mutiny; Abu Jandal is reported to have said, “My father died for the sake of taghut, but I wish to die for the sake of Allah alone.”


Pro-ISIS Hacking Group ‘United Cyber Caliphate’ Targets Australian Websites


On April 14, 2016, the United Cyber Caliphate, formerly known as the Caliphate Cyber Army, announced on Telegram that Australia was the next target for their cyber-attacks. Following this announcement the group posted a list of Australian websites that the group hacked.


Radical Bangladeshi Group Hefazat-e-Islam Warns: ‘We Will Declare Jihad From Chittagong If Islam Is Dropped As The State Religion’


On March 25, Bangladesh’s Islamist organization Hefazat-e-Islam (Defense of Islam) organized a public rally in Chittagong city to protest a move to drop Islam from the country’s constitution. Several religious organizations, including Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh, called for strikes to oppose the move.

A 28-year-old petition seeking to remove Islam as the state religion had been pending in the High Court. However, on March 28, the High Court rejected the petition saying the group that had filed the petition in 1988 had no legitimacy.