- U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Monday met Pakistan’s civilian and military leaders and urged them “redouble” their efforts to rein in terrorists accused of using the country as a base to carry out attacks in neighboring Afghanistan. U.S. officials have long been frustrated by what they see as Pakistan’s reluctance to act against groups such as the Afghan Taliban and the Haqqani network.
- A state security court in Jordan on Monday sentenced one Syrian terrorist to death and handed life sentences to three others for their role in a suicide bombing attack on a Jordanian military border post that killed seven guards last year. Military judge Colonel Mohammad al-Afif said the men, in their early twenties, were involved in helping ISIS stage the suicide bombing that shook the kingdom in June last year.
- German police on Friday secured a device full of wires and nails found near an outdoor Christmas market in the city of Potsdam, but could not establish whether it had contained explosives. Germany is on high alert for terrorist attacks, nearly a year after a Tunisian Islamist rammed a hijacked truck into a Christmas market in central Berlin, killing 11 people as well as the driver.
- Two men suspected of having fought for a branch of al Qaeda in Syria were among four Syrian migrants arrested in the Netherlands, Dutch authorities said on Friday. The national prosecutor’s office said in a statement that the two men were from 2012-2015 members of the Nusra Front, which the Dutch government designates as a terrorist group, and had traveled to the Netherlands as “refugees” in 2015.
- Suspected Boko Haram suicide bombers have killed at least 13 other people in an attack on a market in the northeast Nigerian town of Biu in Borno state, officials said on Saturday. The blasts struck while aid workers were distributing food to people affected by the eight-year conflict with Boko Haram.
- A bomb blast killed eight people and injured 16 others on a bus in Syria’s Homs on Tuesday, state media said, citing the city’s health authority. ISIS claimed the attack, saying the blast killed 11 members of the Syrian army, its official news agency AMAQ said.
- A top leader of al-Qaeda was killed along with 80 people in a joint military operation by Afghan army, intelligence and NATO-led forces, the South Asian nation’s intelligence service said on Tuesday. Omar Khetab, also known as Omar Mansoor, was the most senior member of his branch of the group killed in Afghanistan, the National Directorate of Security said in a statement. Security forces also arrested 27 individuals in the operation in the eastern Afghan provinces of Ghazni, Paktia and Zabul, the agency said, without giving further details.
- Egyptian security forces killed five suspected terrorists in a raid on Monday on a desert location being used by the group for training in the Nile Delta province of Sharqiya, north of Cairo, the interior ministry said. Security forces arrested six other people and seized ammunition and weapons in the operation, a ministry statement said. The statement did not link the militants to any specific group.
- Yemen’s Houthi insurgents have killed Ali Abdullah Saleh, the country’s former president. Saleh and the Houthis conducted a multi-year insurgency against the internationally-recognized government of Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi.
- The Taliban is touting the defection of a jihadist who purportedly served as the deputy leader of the ISIS’s Khorasan province (Wilayat Khorasan). On Nov. 30, the group released a propaganda video featuring the man that defected, which they identified as Mullah Abdul Razzaq Mehdi. The Taliban is using Razzaq’s testimony to encourage more defections.
- A 20-year-old man appeared in court on Wednesday accused of plotting to kill British Prime Minister Theresa May by first detonating an explosive device to get into her Downing Street office. Naa‘imur Rahman, of north London, has been charged with preparing to commit acts of terrorism. Rahman appeared with a co-defendant, 21-year-old Mohammed Imran, from Birmingham, who is also charged with preparing to commit acts of terrorism. Imran was accused of trying to join the ISIS terrorist group in Libya.
- A bomb rigged to a motorcycle exploded in a terrorist-plagued part of northwest Pakistan near the Afghan border, killing nine people, officials said on Wednesday, the latest violence in a recent rise in attacks in the nuclear-armed country. No militant group claimed responsibility.
- The U.S. House of Representatives voted on Tuesday to sharply reduce the annual $300 million in U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority unless it take steps to stop making what lawmakers described as payments that reward violent crime. The measure is intended to stop the Palestinians from paying stipends, referred to as “martyr payments,” to the families of terrorists killed or imprisoned by Israeli authorities. The payments can reach $3,500 per month.
- The US and allied Afghan forces targeted al Qaeda terrorists in at least three Afghan provinces in recent weeks. Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security (NDS) first announced the operations on Tuesday. NATO’s Resolute Support then reported on the raids in a separate statement. NATO did not offer casualty figures for al Qaeda. But the NDS reported that more than 100 members of AQIS had been killed or captured during the operations.