Global Terrorism This Week (GTTW) – September 19-25, 2022

Once again global terrorism was heavily by dominated – in fact 100% the work of – jihadis

Thought of the Week – Apostasy

Terrorist groups which are at least in part motivated by religion tend to adhere to an interpretation of that religion in which they consider themselves more ‘pure’ or ‘righteous’ than others who practice the faith (this was discussed at length in my 2019 book When Religions Kill).

Not only do these extremists believe they are somehow superior when it comes to their religion but they tend to describe co-religionists as ‘apostates’. Somalia’s Al Shabaab (AS) provided a good example this week.

In a 30-minute video released through its Al-Kataib propaganda outlet titled “No Doubt, Allaah’s Promise is True” an AS spokesman noted in a statement wishing fighters well that:

  • “their goals of raising high the Book of Allaah, implementing the Shari’ah, safeguarding the Muslims and their resources and fighting the enemy crusaders and their apostate allies who have waged war against the religion, country, and the Muslims…we hereby call on all the Muslims who live, work, park their cars or seek leisure near the vicinities of the crusader and apostate bases, offices or headquarters of the crusader invaders and their apostate allies, to stay away and be extremely cautious from these areas.”

The “apostate allies” is a clear reference to the Somali government and the Somali National Army (SNA) which, one could reasonably assume, are good Muslims. Not to AS though: they are “apostates” (which the Oxford dictionary defines as someone who abandons or renounces his faith). I am fairly certain the SNA soldiers did no such thing!

To terrorists none of this matters: nor does the truth. They are content with condemning and rejecting anything that disagrees with their non-normative view of their belief system.

Which makes it easy for everyone else to ‘abandon and renounce’ them!

This week by the numbers

  • Countries which suffered attacks: Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Iraq, Israel/Palestine, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Somalia, Syria, Thailand
  • Approximate number of casualties: 51 dead, 98 wounded, 30 terrorists killed
  • Ideology of attackers: Islamist (100%)
  • Attacks/casualties tied to RWE: 0



  • A Vienna court ruled on September 19 that six men with alleged links to a sympathiser of ISIS who carried out a deadly shooting in Vienna in 2020 (4 dead, 20 wounded) will go on trial next month. The terrorist, Kujtim Fejzulai, a dual national of Austria and North Macedonia, had a previous conviction for trying to join ISIS in Syria.

Burkina Faso

Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)


  • A teenager accused of planning an Islamist-motivated attack in Germany was arrested on September 22. The dual German-Kosovar citizen detained in the western town of Iserlohn allegedly was under the influence of an ISIS follower who posted propaganda on online messaging services: the suspect worried his alleged bombing plans would be foiled and therefore decided to attack police officers with a knife instead but was arrested before before doing so.


  • India’s National Investigation Agency (NIA) arrested more than 100 members of an alleged Islamist organisation on September 22 during a nationwide clampdown on the group over allegations of terror funding and radicalising people. The NIA raided the offices and homes of senior members of the Popular Front of India (PFI) across 10 states. These included Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana in the south. In 2017, six members of the group were identified as having joined ISIS.


  • Iraqi security forces killed eight ISIS terrorists in the country’s north on September 18-19. Two members of the Iraqi Army and the Popular Mobilisation Forces also died.
  • On September 21 Kurdish Syrian Defence Forces (SDF)-linked forces prevented an attack on the al-Hol camp by an ISIS cell. One of the vehicles exploded prematurely about 12 miles northeast of the camp, which alerted the nearby SDF: when the forces arrived at the scene, two men got out of the second vehicle, one detonated a suicide vest while the second was shot and killed by SDF forces. Another ISIS militant was in SDF custody.










  • On September 19 a Swiss court handed down a nine-year sentence to a female jihadi who wounded two people in a knife attack in an upscale store near the border with Italy on November 24, 2020. She slit the throats of the two victims while yelling ‘Allahu Akbar’ and “I will avenge the Prophet Muhammad’: the attack was in the name of ISIS.



  • A Thai policeman was killed, and four others injured when a roadside bomb detonated as their vehicles passed near a hospital in the southern Pattani province on September 20. Police believe the bomb was planted in a rubbish bin in front of the hospital and that it was detonated remotely, most likely by Islamist terrorists who have been active for decades. Last month, a wave of at least 17 coordinated arson attacks and explosions targeted convenience stores at petrol stations in the provinces of Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat leaving seven people suffering minor injuries.



By Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. Phil is a 32-year veteran of CSE and CSIS and the author of six books on terrorism.

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