This report summarizes notable events discussed on jihadist Web forums during October 2016.
- A number of jihad fighters identified with Al-Qaeda publish eulogies in memory of Sheikh Abu al-Faraj al-Misri, a former member of the Shura Council of Al-Nusra Front who was killed in a drone strike in Syria. Sheikh Abu Abdullah al Shami, a member of the Shura Council of Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, threatens to take revenge against the US in response to the killing of al-Misri and other jihad fighters.
- Sheikh Khalid bin ‘Umar Bartifi, a senior member of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, claims that the Sunni population in Syria, Iraq and Yemen is being subjected to systematic slaughter by the Crusader-Shi’ite coalition. According to him, Iran is exploiting the instability in the region in order to gain control over Mecca and Medina. In light of this, he called on Sunni cleric to make Sunnis aware of this danger and to support the mujahideen, and he called on tribes and youth to fight against the enemies of the Sunnis either by joining the ranks of the mujahideen, through economic support or other means. Finally, he praises jihad fighters and emphasizes that their actions are of very important for the Muslim Nation, as is unity among the ranks.
- Abdelmalek Droukdel, the leader of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, calls on residents of Libya and on the youth to help defend the Muslim Nation, especially in Benghazi, Libya, from the aggression of the tyrant regimes collaborating with the French and British. According to him, Khalifa Haftar’s regime in Libya and the regimes in Egypt, the Emirates and Jordan, stand out for their persecution of Muslims and their suppression of Islam.
- Ahrar al-Sham and Jund al-Aqsa blame one another for the failure of efforts to battle against the Alawite regime forces and for the growing power of the Islamic State due to the tensions between them. Jund al-Aqsa adds that it swore allegiance to the leader of the Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, Abu Muhammad al-Julani, in order to unite the ranks of the Syrian revolution.
- Islamic rebel factions in Syria, led by Ahrar al-Sham, criticize Sheikh Abu Muhammad al-Maqdisi, a prominent Salafi-jihadist ideologue in Jordan, for his implicit support for suicide attacks against forces operating in Operation “Euphrates Shield”, which is mainly composed of the Turkish army and Syrian opposition groups fighting against the IS. Abu Maria al-Qahtani, who served as the former religious authority for Al-Nusra Front, calls on al-Maqdisi not to intervene in the Syrian arena and accuses him of spreading radical ideology promoting the IS, among others.