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Terrorism News

A collection of open-source terrorism news from around the world.
Date: Dec 18, 2018

A former Elkhart woman accused of supporting Islamic State fighters wants to be released before trial to receive treatment for trauma that “continues to torment her,” court records show.

Samantha Elhasanni “is desperately in need of mental health treatment” that she’s been unable to receive while in the U.S. Marshal’s custody, her attorneys, Anthony Durkin and Joshua Herman, said in a motion.

Elhassani’s “condition has continued to deteriorate” while in custody, causing Durkin and Herman “great concern,” according to the motion.

Elhassani, also known as Samantha Sally, is scheduled to go to trial in 2020. She has pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to provide material support to the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS, and aiding and abetting individuals in providing material support to the Islamic State group.

Read more: Chicago Tribune

In a startling admission, a senior leader in the Afghan Taliban told NBC News that “thousands” of foreign fighters are currently embedded in the group in Afghanistan. The admission is astonishing as the Taliban has attempted to obscure its relationship with al Qaeda, even though it slips up every now and then. FDD’s Long War Journal has maintained for the last eight years that US military and intelligence estimates of between 50 to 100 al Qaeda in Afghanistan (later modified to 200) have been woefully low.

It is unclear why the Taliban leader felt the urge to admit that thousands of foreign fighters are fighting alongside his group (most these are without a doubt al Qaeda, note how the Taliban commander refers to them as “foreign militants”). Perhaps he is emboldened by the US government’s desperation to negotiate with the Taliban, and is unconcerned that his comments will make US officials reconsider the Taliban’s relationship with al Qaeda. 

Read more: Long War Journal

German authorities say police are searching a Berlin mosque as part of an investigation into its imam on suspicion he raised money to support an Islamic fighter in Syria.

Berlin prosecutors said Tuesday that 45-year-old Ahmad A., whose last name wasn’t given in line with privacy laws, was the target of the raid on the As-Sahaba mosque in the capital’s Wedding district.

They said in two tweets that A., who preaches under the name Abul Baraa, is suspected of financing terrorism for sending money to “a jihadi fighter in Syria for the purchase of military equipment.”

Read more: AP

Segregating and isolating terrorism offenders in prisons only hardens their beliefs and makes rehabilitation more difficult, according to a 10-year study of jails in the Philippines.

The findings, published on Tuesday by Australian National University researcher Clarke Jones, raise questions about the approach taken in some Australian jails, particularly New South Wales’ Supermax, where terrorism offenders are shut off from the general prison population.

The study tends to support a contrasting approach taken in Victoria, where terrorism offenders are integrated with others to “prevent extremist views being continually reinforced by like-minded prisoners”.

Read more: The Guardian (UK)

A South Florida man who posted bomb-making instructions on the internet while expressing his support for Islamic extremism has been arrested on terrorism-related charges.

Tayyab Tahir Ismail, 34, of Pembroke Pines used a mobile messaging platform to distribute information on making weapons of mass destruction at least five times over the summer, according to an FBI criminal affidavit.

“Ismail was a member of various rooms within the platform and each of these rooms contained members who support violent jihad,” the affidavit says. Among them: supporters of ISIS, the notorious Middle Eastern terrorist group known for videotaping the killings of Western hostages.

Read more: Miami Herald