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The Role of Jihadi Movements in Syrian Local Governance

14/07/17
Local councils, Syria, Terrorism and Security Ayman Al Dassouky
Executive Summary Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), exemplifies how international extremist jihadi organizations, such as Al Qaeda, have evolved in Syria. Informed by the experiences of Al Qaeda and other jihadi groups in Iraq, HTS has developed a governance strategy that…

Al-Qaeda Affiliate and Ahrar al-Sham Compete for Control in Idlib

03/07/17
Russia, Syria, Terrorism and Security, Turkey, İran Ibrahim al-Assil, The Middle East Institute
"This special report was published byMiddle East Institute , in collaboration with Omran for Strategic Studies, andOPC- Orient Policy Center" Idlib is currently the site of increasing competition between the two most dominant armed coalitions, the al-Qaeda-linked Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham…

Analysis: The Battlefield in Syria’s Southernmost City, Daraa

24/06/17
Russia, Syria, Terrorism and Security Nawar Sh. Oliver
In recent weeks Daraa has witnessed the most intense clashes and aerial bombardments it has seen for years. Despite the plan for “de-escalation zones,” civilians in the city are likely to becaught in the newest battlefield for foreign power proxies…

De-escalation Zones: A Cloak to Refocus on the East

13/06/17
Middle East, Russia, Syria, Turkey, İran Omran Center
Executive Summary The de-escalation zones from the latest Astana meeting on Syria aimed to freeze the conflict on the western fronts in order to deploy the regime and its allies’ forces to prevent a total loss of the eastern territories…

ISIS and the Strategic Vacuum- The Dilemma of Role Distribution- The Raqqa Model

21/05/17
Middle East, Syria, Terrorism and Security Nawar Sh. Oliver, Sasha El Alu
Executive Summary The Raqqa operation closely mirrors the Mosul operation both politically and militarily. Politically, it was launched amid disagreements and a lack of clarity about which local and international forces would participate and who would govern the city post…