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Syrian, Iraqi, and Lebanese insurgencies

Current military situation (as of Script error):

  Controlled by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant
  Controlled by al-Nusra
  Controlled by other Syrian rebels
  Controlled by the Syrian Government
  Controlled by Iraqi government
  Controlled by Syrian Kurds
  Controlled by Iraqi Kurds
  Controlled by the Lebanese Government
  Controlled by Hezbollah

This article contains the timeline of events for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/ISIS), also self-proclaimed as the Islamic State (IS), from its establishment in April 2013 to the present.

For earlier events see Islamic State of Iraq § Timeline.

2013 eventsEdit

  • On 8 April 2013, having expanded into Syria, the group Islamic State of Iraq (ISI) adopted the name Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham.[1][2][3]
  • Starting in April 2013, ISIL made rapid military gains in northern Syria, where according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, it was "the strongest group".[4]
  • 11 May: Two car bombs exploded in the town of Reyhanlı in Hatay Province, Turkey. At least 51 were killed and 140 injured.[5] The attack was the deadliest single act of terrorism ever to take place on Turkish soil.[6] Along with the Syrian intelligence service, ISIL was suspected of carrying out the attack.[7]
  • In July, the Free Syrian Army's battalion chief Kamal Hamami—better known by his nom de guerre Abu Bassir Al-Jeblawi—was killed by ISIL's Coast region emir in Latakia's rural northern highlands. Al-Jeblawi was travelling to visit the Al-Izz Bin Abdulsalam Brigade operating in the region when ISIL members refused his passage.[8]
  • On 22 July, ISIL organised a mass break-out of its members being held in Iraq's prison in Taji and Abu Ghraib prison, freeing more than 500 prisoners, many of them veterans of the Iraqi insurgency (2003–11)[9][10] or senior commanders of ISIL.[11][12] ISIL described the operation as involving 12 car bombs, numerous suicide bombers and mortar and rocket fire.[11][12] It was described as the culmination of a one-year campaign which was launched by ISIL leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.[13]
  • In early August the Menagh Air Base was captured by forces including ISIL.[14]
  • In September, members of ISIL killed the Ahrar ash-Sham commander Abu Obeida Al-Binnishi, after he had intervened to protect a Malaysian Islamic charity; ISIL had mistaken its Malaysian flag for that of the United States.[15][16]
  • Also in September, ISIL overran the town of Azaz, taking it from an FSA-affiliated rebel brigade.[17] ISIL had attempted to kidnap a German doctor working in Azaz.[18] In November 2013, Today's Zaman, a newspaper in Turkey, reported that Turkish authorities had detailed information on ISIL's plans to carry out suicide bombings in Turkey.[19]
  • From 30 September, several Turkish media websites reported that ISIL had accepted responsibility for the 11 May attack and had threatened further attacks on Turkey.[20][21][22][23]
  • In December, there were reports of fighting between ISIL and the Sunni, Salafist rebel group, Ahrar ash-Sham, in the town of Maskanah, Aleppo.[24]
  • In December, ISIL began an offensive in Anbar Governorate province in Iraq, changing the insurgency there into a regional war.[citation needed]

2014 eventsEdit

Index: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December.

January 2014Edit

  • 3 January: ISIL proclaimed itself as an Islamic state in Fallujah.[25] After prolonged tensions, the newly formed Army of Mujahedeen, the Free Syrian Army and the Islamic Front launched offensives against ISIL in the Syrian provinces of Aleppo and Idlib. These groups, proclaiming a "second revolution", attacked ISIL in many village areas, attacking up to 80% of those in Idlib and 65% in Aleppo.[26]
  • 4 January: Fallujah was captured by ISIL after several days of fighting which left more than 100 dead.[27][28] ISIL claimed responsibility for the car-bomb attack on 2 January that killed four people and wounded dozens in the Beirut suburb of Haret Hreik a town that acts as headquarters to Hezbollah.[29][30]
  • 6 January: Syrian rebels managed to expel ISIL from the city of Ar-Raqqah, ISIL's largest stronghold and the capital of the Ar-Raqqah province.[31]
  • 8 January: Islamists of several Syrian rebel brigades expelled most ISIL forces from the city of Aleppo.[32] However, ISIL reinforcements from Deir ez-Zor province managed to retake several neighbourhood of the city of Ar-Raqqah.[33] By this date ISIL had captured Al-Karmah, Hīt, Khaldiyah, Haditha and Al Qaim and several smaller towns in Anbar province, while fighting raged in Ramadi and Abu Ghraib.[34][35][36][37][38] By mid-January ISIL fighters had retaken the entire city of Ar-Raqqah, while rebels expelled ISIL from the city of Aleppo and the villages west of it.[citation needed]
  • 13 January: Fallujah Dam was taken by pro-government tribes. In the previous week ISIL militants had used the dam to flood area around the city with the waters of the Euphrates which also caused the lowering of water levels in the southern provinces.[39]
  • 16 January: The Iraqi Army and allied Sunni tribes recaptured Saqlawiyah from ISIL.[40]
  • 22 January: Over 50 ISIL militants were killed by Iraqi Air Force strikes in Anbar province.[41]
  • 25 January: ISIL announced the creation of its new Lebanese arm, pledging to fight the Shia militant group Hezbollah in Lebanon.[42]
  • 29 January: Turkish aircraft near the border fired on an ISIL convoy inside Aleppo province in Syria, killing 11 ISIL fighters and one ISIL emir.[43][44]
  • 30 January: ISIL fired on border patrol soldiers in Turkey. The Turkish Army retaliated with Panter howitzers and destroyed the ISIL convoy.[45][46][47] Iraqi forces and their tribal allies recaptured Albu Farraj and Al-Nasaf near Ramadi.[48]
  • In late January, Haji Bakr, ISIL's then second-in-command, was reported to have been assassinated by Syrian militants. Haji Bakr had previously been head of al-Qaeda's military council and a former military officer in Saddam Hussain's army.[49]

February 2014Edit

  • 3 February: al-Qaeda's general command broke off its links with ISIL, reportedly to concentrate the Islamist effort on unseating President Bashar al-Assad.[50]
  • By mid-February, al-Nusra Front had joined the battle in support of rebel forces, and expelled ISIL forces from the Deir ez-Zor province in Syria.[51]
  • 19 February: An ISIL leader, Abd Khaliq Mahedi, surrendered to the Chairman of Sons of Iraq Council, due to disagreement with other ISIL leaders on the killing of Iraqi soldiers and bombing of civilian houses.[52]
  • 23 February: ISIL carried out a suicide attack in Aleppo, killing a commander of Ahrar ash-Sham and six other members of the group.[citation needed]
  • 28 February: The pro-government Sunni tribal Sheikh and councilman, Fleih al-Osman, and six of his men were killed by a suicide bomber in Haditha.[53]

March 2014Edit

  • By March, ISIL forces had fully retreated from Syria's Idlib province after battles against the Syrian rebels.[54][55]
  • 4 March: ISIL retreated from the Turkey border town of Azaz and nearby villages, choosing instead to consolidate around Ar-Raqqah, in anticipation of an escalation of fighting with al-Nusra.[56]
  • 8 March: Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki accused Saudi Arabia and Qatar of openly funding ISIL.[57][58]
  • 15 March: The number of internally displaced persons in Anbar province, especially from Fallujah and Ramadi, reached 300,000. The number of people recorded killed by this date was 336, with 1,562 more wounded.[59]
  • 16 March: Iraqi Security Forces recaptured Ramadi and parts of Fallujah.[60]
  • 20 March: In Niğde city in Turkey, three ethnic Albanian[61] members of ISIL[62] opened fire while hijacking a truck, killing one police officer and one gendarmerie officer and wounding five people.[63][64] Shortly after their arrest, Polis Özel Harekat teams launched a series of operations against ISIL in İstanbul. Two Azerbaijanis were arrested.[65]

April 2014Edit

  • 27 April: Iraqi helicopters reportedly destroyed an ISIL convoy inside Syria. This may be the first time that Iraqi forces have struck outside their country since the Gulf War.[66]

May 2014Edit

  • 1 May: ISIL carried out a total of seven public killings in the city of Ar-Raqqah in northern Syria.[67] Pictures that emerged from the city show how ISIL had been carrying out public crucifixions in areas under its control.[68] In most of these crucifixions, the victims were shot first and their bodies were then displayed,[69] but there were also reports of crucifixions preceding the victims being shot or decapitated.[70]
  • 9–18 May: The Iraqi Army retook 16 villages and towns around Fallujah.[71]

June 2014Edit

  • In early June, ISIL was reported to have seized control of most of Mosul, the second most populous city in Iraq, a large part of the surrounding Nineveh province, and the city of Fallujah.[72] ISIL also took control of Tikrit, the administrative centre of the Salah ad Din Governorate,[73] with the ultimate goal of capturing Baghdad, the Iraqi capital.[74] ISIL was believed to have only 2,000–3,000 fighters up until the Mosul campaign, but during that campaign, it became evident that this number was a gross underestimate.[75]
  • Also in June, there were reports that a number of Sunni groups in Iraq that were opposed to the predominantly Shia government had joined ISIL, thus bolstering the group's numbers.[76][not in citation given][77] However, the Kurds—who are mostly Sunnis—were unwilling to be drawn into the conflict, and there were clashes in the area between ISIL and the Kurdish Peshmerga.[78][79]
  • 5 June: ISIL militants stormed the city of Samarra, Iraq, before being ousted by airstrikes mounted by the Iraqi military. According to army officials, 12 policemen, 80 ISIL militants and several civilians were killed.[80] The Commander of the Nagshabandiya Movement, Khalil al-Hayeeti, was killed in a clash with government forces in Anbar province.[81]
  • 6 June: ISIL militants carried out multiple attacks in the city of Mosul, Iraq.[82][83]
  • 7 June: ISIL militants took over the University of Anbar in Ramadi, Iraq, killed guards and held 1,300 students hostage, before being ousted by the Iraqi military.[84][85]
  • 8 June: An ISIL bombing in Jalula killed 18 members of the Kurdish security forces.[86] ISIL forces captured Hawija, Zab, Riyadh, Abbasi, Rashad and Yankaja near Kirkuk.[87]
  • 9 June: Mosul fell to ISIL control. The militants seized control of government offices, the airport, and police stations.[88] Militants also looted the Central Bank in Mosul, reportedly absconding with US$429 million.[89] More than 500,000 people fled Mosul to escape ISIL, including 400 Christian families, nearly the entire Christian element of the population of Mosul.[90][91] Mosul is a strategic city as it is at a crossroad between Syria and Iraq, and poses the threat of ISIL seizing control of oil production.[75] At the same time, hundreds of Christian families fled from the Nineva Plains in face of the ISIL advance.[90] 15 captured Iraqi soldiers were killed while captive by ISIL near Kirkuk.[92]
  • 10 June: ISIL killed 670 Shia inmates of Badush prison in Mosul.[93][94] The 4th-century Mar Behnam Monastery was seized by ISIL, which forced its monks to leave without taking anything with them.[95] Sixty UN staff were evacuated from Baghdad to Jordan.[96]
  • 11 June: ISIL seized the Turkish consulate in the Iraqi city of Mosul, and kidnapped the head of the diplomatic mission and several staff members. Baiji was captured by ISIL forces, except for its surrounded oil refinery.[97][98] Tikrit also fell to ISIL, which attacked Samarra as well, without succeeding in conquering it.[99][100][101] 46 Indian nurses were stranded in Tikrit[102] (they were released and flown back to India at the beginning of July[103])
  • 12 June: ISIL captured ten towns in Saladin Province and routed an Iraqi Border Patrol battalion heading towards Sinjar with 60 trucks.[104] Some of the 4,000–11,000 cadets and soldiers who had been ordered to leave Camp Speicher base were captured by ISIL; of these 1,095–1,700 were killed over the next three days.[105] Human Rights Watch issued a statement about the growing threat to civilians in Iraq.[106] Twelve imams were killed in Mosul for refusing to swear loyalty to ISIL.[107] The imam of the Grand Mosque of Mosul, Muhammad al-Mansuri, was killed for the same reason.[108][109] ISIL laid siege to the town of Amerli, where 13,000 Turkmen civilians were trapped.[90]
  • 13 June: ISIL captured two towns in Diyala Province and several villages around the Hamrin Mountains.[110][111] Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, expressed alarm at reports that ISIL fighters "have been actively seeking out and killing soldiers, police and civilians, whom they perceive as being associated with the government".[112] Kurdish Peshmerga forces occupied the city of Kirkuk, abandoned by the retreating Iraqi Army in face of the ISIL offensive.[113] Kurdish forces also secured Jalula after it had been abandoned by Iraqi Army.[114]
    Secretary Kerry Sits With Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki Before Meeting in Baghdad June 2014

    US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki in Baghdad on 23 June 2014

  • 14 June: The Iraqi Army recaptured the town of Al-Mutasim near Samarra.[115][116] The bodies of 128 Iraqi soldiers and policemen who had been killed in the battle of Mosul were retrieved.[117]
  • 15 June: ISIL militants captured the Iraqi city of Tal Afar, in the province of Nineveh, and its air base—18 ISIL militants, ten civilians and presumably a heavy number of defenders were killed—and also two villages in Adhaim.[104][118][119][120][121] The Iraqi Air Force claimed to have killed 278 ISIL militants in airstrikes.[122] Iraqi Army retook the town of Ishaqi, where the burned bodies of 12 policemen were found.[123]
  • 16 June: ISIL ambushed a convoy of Shia militia and killed 28–29 Shia volunteers near Samarra.[124] ISIL also captured Saqlawiyah and shot down a helicopter.[125] Iraqi police killed 44 Sunni prisoners before retreating from Baqubah.[126]
  • 17 June: The Iraqi Army recaptured the lost districts of Baqubah.[127] Syrian rebels captured the Al-Qa'im border crossing from Iraqi forces.[128] The bodies of 18 Iraqi soldiers, killed while captive, were found near Samarra.[129]
  • 18 June: ISIL captured three villages in Salaheddin province; 20 civilians were killed during the fighting.[130]
  • 19 June: ISIL captured the Al Muthanna Chemical Weapons Facility near Lake Tharthar.[131]
  • 21 June: After the agreed desertion of 400 Iraqi soldiers, ISIL captured Iraq’s largest oil refinery in Baiji.[132][133][134] Thousands of Shia militia members from all over Iraq rallied in a show of strength.[135] Clashes between ISIL and allied Sunni militants left 17 dead in Hawija.[136]
  • 22 June: One day after seizing the border crossing at Al-Qaim, a town in a province which borders Syria,[137] ISIL forces captured the towns of Rawa, Ana, Huseiba and Rutba.[138][139] An entire Iraqi Security Forces brigade was reportedly destroyed in the battles raging in the area.[140] Two more border crossings, one with Syria—Al-Waleed—and one with Jordan—Turaibil,— were taken by ISIL. During the fighting 21 leaders of Iraqi towns in the area were killed.[141]
  • 23 June: ISIL captured Tal Afar airport.[142] Iraqi forces recaptured the Al-Waleed border crossing.[143]
  • 24 June: The Syrian Air Force bombed ISIL positions in Iraq for the first time. Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki stated: "There was no coordination involved, but we welcome this action. We welcome any Syrian strike against ISIS because this group targets both Iraq and Syria."[144] Iraqi forces recaptured from ISIL the Turaibil border crossing.[143]
  • 25 June: Al-Nusra Front's branch in the Syrian town of al-Bukamal pledged loyalty to ISIL, thus bringing months of fighting between the two groups to a close.[145][146] Syrian airstrikes and missile launches killed 50 and wounded 132 in Al Rutba.[147] ISIL overran the town of Al-Alam and the Ajeel oil site.[148]
  • 25 June: Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said that Iraq had purchased used Sukhoi fighter jets from Russia and Belarus to battle ISIL militants, after delays in the delivery of F-16 fighters purchased from the US.[149] "[If] we had air cover, we would have averted what happened", he said.[150][151]
  • 26 June: Iraq launched its first counterattack against ISIL, an airborne assault to seize back control of Tikrit University.[152] ISIL captured the town of Mansouriyat al-Jabal with its four natural gas fields.[153]
  • 27 June: The Iraqi Army reconquered Al-Alam and Mansouriyat al-Jabal.[154]
  • 28 June: The Jerusalem Post reported that the Obama administration had requested US$500 million from Congress to use in the training and arming of "moderate" Syrian rebels fighting against the Syrian government, in order to counter the growing threat posed by ISIL in Syria and Iraq.[155]
  • 29 June: ISIL announced the establishment of a new caliphate. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was appointed its caliph, and the group formally changed its name to the "Islamic State".[156]
  • 30 June: Iraqi army recaptured the town of Mukayshifah, killing 40 ISIL members and capturing 13.[157] Iraqi Army attempts to recapture Tikrit were repelled by ISIL, which lost 215 men according to Iraqi government sources.[citation needed]
  • According to the UN, during the month of June at least 1,531 civilians and 886 members of the security forces were killed in Iraq—excluding Anbar province—and 1,763 civilians and 524 were wounded; this was the highest number of casualties in Iraq since May 2007.[158][159][160][161]

July 2014Edit

Nineveh Nebi Yunus Excavations 1990

Prophet Yunus Mosque before being destroyed.

  • 2 July: Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the self-proclaimed caliph of the new "Islamic State" (ISIL), said that Muslims should unite to capture "Rome" in order to "own the world".[162][163] He called on Muslims around the world to unite behind him as their leader.[164]
  • 3 July: ISIL captured Syria's largest oilfield, the al-Omar oilfield, from al-Nusra Front, which put up no resistance to the attack.[165] The Iraqi Army recaptured the town of Awja near Tikrit.[166]
  • 7 July: ISIL abducted 11 civilians from the village of Samra near Tikrit for allegedly providing information to the Iraqi Army.[90]
  • 8 July: A candidate in the April general election and a judge of the Misdemeanour Court were abducted by ISIL in Ninewa.[90]
  • 9 July: ISIL kidnapped at least 60 former Iraqi Army officers in areas around Mosul.[90]
  • 11–12 July: ISIL members killed about 700 Turkmen civilians in the village of Beshir.[94][167]
  • 13 July: The bodies of 12 men, presumably killed while captive, were found in Tawakkul village northeast of Baquba.[90]
  • 16 July: Forty-two captured Iraqi soldiers were killed by ISIL in Awenat, south of Tikrit.[90]
  • 15 July: A new attempt by the Iraqi Army to recapture Tikrit was repelled; 52 Iraqi soldiers and 40 ISIL members were killed in the fighting.[168]
  • 17 July: Syria's Shaer gas field in Homs Governorate was seized by ISIL. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), at least 90 National Defence Force guards defending the field were killed, as were 21 ISIL fighters.[169] The SOHR later put the death toll from the fighting and the killing of prisoners at 270 soldiers, militiamen and staff, and at least 40 ISIL fighters.[170]
  • 19 July: ISIL claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing which killed 33 people and left more than 50 wounded. The explosion occurred in Baghdad's Kadhimiya district, which is the site of a major Shia shrine.[171]
  • 22 July: the Sunni Imam Abdul Rahman al-Jobouri was killed in Baquba for having denounced ISIL.[90][172]
  • 24 July: ISIL blew up the Mosque and tomb of the Prophet Yunus (Jonah) in Mosul,[173] with no reported casualties.[174] Residents in the area said that ISIL had erased a piece of Iraqi heritage.[175] Johah's tomb was also an important holy site in the Jewish heritage as well.[176]
  • 25 July: ISIL captures a Syrian 17th Division base near Raqqa and beheads several captured soldiers, whose heads are displayed in Raqqa.[177] 32 jihadists and 42 Syrian Army members were overall killed on this day in clashes between ISIL and Syrian Army in Hasakeh, Raqqa and Aleppo provinces.[178] The remains of 18 Iraqi policemen, presumably killed while captive, were found in Abbasiyah, south of Tikrit.[90]
  • 26 July: ISIL blew up the Nabi Shiyt (Prophet Seth) shrine in Mosul. Sami al-Massoudi, deputy head of the Shia endowment agency which oversees holy sites, confirmed the destruction and added that ISIL had taken artefacts from the shrine.[179] Syrian Army recaptured the Shaer gas field from ISIL.[180]
  • 27 July: about 40 bodies, presumably of Iraqi soldiers killed while captive, were found in a ditch near Jumela village.[90] ISIL abducted 20 young students and a Sufi Muslim leader in al-Muhamadiya Mosque in Mosul.[90]
  • 28 July: To mark the Muslim holy festival of Eid al-Fitr, which ends the period of Ramadan, ISIL released a video showing graphic scenes of a large scale killing of captives.[181][182]
  • 29–30 July: 43 Shabak families were abducted by ISIL in villages near Mosul.[90]
  • The UN reported that of the 1,737 fatal casualties of the Iraq conflict during July, 1,186 were civilians and 551 security forces members.[183] A further 1,511 civilians and 467 security forces members were wounded.[184] The figures did not include Anbar province.
President Obama Makes a Statement on Iraq - 080714

US President Obama delivers an update on the situation and US position on Iraq, authorising airstrikes against ISIL and humanitarian aid for religious minorities trapped on a mountain.[185]

August 2014Edit

  • 1 August: The Indonesian National Counterterrorism Agency (BNPT (id)) declared ISIL a terrorist organisation.[186]
  • 2 August: The Iraqi Army confirmed that 37 loyalist fighters had died during combat with ISIL south of Baghdad and in Mosul. The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) claimed that "hundreds" of ISIL militiamen had died in the action.[187]
  • 2 August: ISIL and its al-Nusra Front allies invaded Lebanon in and around the town of Arsal, sparking a five-day battle with the Lebanese Army, which pushed ISIL near to the border with Syria. Over a 100 fighters were killed and scores of civilians were killed or wounded.
  • 3 August: ISIL fighters occupied the Iraqi city of Zumar and an oilfield in the north of Iraq, after a battle against Kurdish forces.[188] Also the Yazidi city of Sinjar was captured, prompting a massacre of its inhabitants. More than 12 Yazidi children died of hunger, dehydration and heat on Jabar Sinjar.[90] Ten Yazidi families fleeing from al-Qahtaniya area were attacked by ISIL, which killed the men and abducted women and children.[90] 70 to 90 Yazidi men were shot by ISIL members in Qiniyeh village.[90] 450–500 abducted Yazidi women and girls were taken to Tal Afar; hundreds more to Si Basha Khidri and then Ba'aj.[90]
  • 4 August: ISIL attacked Jabal Sinjar, killed 30 Yazidi men and abducted a number of women.[90] Two Yazidi children and some elderly or people with disabilities died on Jabal Sinjar.[90] 60 more Yazidi men were killed in the village of Hardan, and their wives and daughters abducted.[90] Other Yazidi women were abducted in other villages in the area.[90] Yazidi community leaders stated that at lest 200 Yazidi had been killed in Sinjar and 60–70 near Ramadi Jabal.[90]
  • 5 August: An ISIL offensive in the Sinjar area of northern Iraq had forced 30,000–50,000 Yazidis to flee into the mountains. They had been threatened with death if they refused conversion to Islam. A UN representative said that "a humanitarian tragedy is unfolding in Sinjar."[189] (See Persecution of Yazidis by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.) The number of Yazidi children who died of hunger and dehydratation on Jabal Sinjar reached 40.[90]
  • 6 August: ISIL captured the town of Tal Keif. Between 3 and 6 August more than 50 Yazidi were killed near Dhola village, 100 in Khana Sor village, 250-300 in Hardan area, more than 200 between Adnaniya and Jazeera, dozens near al-Shimal village and on the road from Matu village to Jabal Sinjar, and more than 200 children had died from thirst, starvation and heat while fleeing to Jabal Sinjar; about 500 Yazidi women and children were abducted from Ba’aj and more than 200 from Tal Banat.[90] Many of them were sold as sex slaves.[90] More than 80,000 people, mostly Yazidi, fled Sinjar district.[90]
  • 7 August: ISIL took control of the town of Qaraqosh in the Iraqi province of Nineveh, which forced its large (50,000) Christian population to flee.[190] Also the towns of Bartella, Tel Keppe, Karemlash and Makhmour fell to the ISIL on the same day.[191][192] ISIL killed in Sinjar about 100 captive Shia Turkmen displaced from Tal Afar.[90] A total of 200,000 Christian Assyrians fled from these cities and from villages in the Nineva plains.[193]
  • 7 August: US President Obama authorised targeted airstrikes in Iraq against ISIL, along with airdrops of aid.[194] The UK offered the US assistance with surveillance and refuelling, and planned humanitarian airdrops to Iraqi refugees.[195]
  • 8 August: The US asserted that the systematic destruction of the Yazidi people by ISIL was genocide.[196] The US military launched indefinite airstrikes targeting ISIL, with humanitarian aid support from the UK and France, in order to protect civilians in northern Iraq.[197][198][199] ISIL had advanced to within 30 km of Erbil in northern Iraq.[200][201] The UK is also considering joining the US in airstrikes.[202]
  • 10 August: The Battle for Tabqa Air base, the last bastion for Syrian military forces in the Raqqah province, began.[203] France's Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said that Iraq's Kurds must be equipped to fight against ISIL and indicated that France would consider providing arms aid.[204] ISIL militants buried an unknown number of Yazidi women and children alive, in an attack that killed 500 people, in what has been described as ongoing genocide in northern Iraq.[205][206] Kurdish forces retook the towns of Makhmour and al-Gweir.[207]
  • 11 August: The Arab League accused ISIL of committing crimes against humanity.[208][209] The UK decided not to join the US in airstrikes and instead stepped up its humanitarian aid to refugees.[210] The commander of the Sahwa militia in Hawija was abducted by ISIL.[90]
  • 12 August: The parents of kidnapped American journalist James Foley received an email from his captors. The US announced that it would not extend its airstrikes against ISIL to areas outside northern Iraq, emphasising that the objective of the airstrikes was to protect US diplomats in Erbil.[211] The US and the UK airdropped 60,000 litres of water and 75,000 meals for stranded refugees. The Vatican called on religious leaders of all denominations, particularly Muslim leaders, to unite and condemn the IS for what it described as "heinous crimes" and the use of religion to justify them.[212] An Iraqi helicopter involved in the rescue of Yazidis on Mount Sinjar crashed near Sinjar, killing Major General Majid Ahmed Saadi and injuring 20 people, including Yazidi Member of Parliament Vian Dakhil and a New York times reporter.[213][214]
  • 13 August: The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that ISIL had seized control of six villages near the Turkish border in the northern province of Aleppo in Syria.[215]
    2014-08-16 Demonstration Jesiden Eziden Aleviten Kurden in Hannover gegen die Terrorgruppe Islamischer Staat (IS), (313)

    More than 10,000 Kurds in Hanover protest against the terror of ISIL in Iraq, 16 August 2014

  • 14 August: Kurdish Peshmerga forces and U.S. air strike broke the ISIL siege on Mount Sinjar, thus allowing tens of thousands of Yazidi refugees trapped there to escape.[216] Nouri al-Maliki resigned from his position of Prime Minister of Iraq.[217]
  • 15 August: The United Nations Security Council issued a resolution which condemned "the terrorist acts of ISIL and its violent extremist ideology, and its continued ... systematic abuses ... of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law".[218] The entire male population of the Yazidi village of Khocho, up to 400 men, were shot by ISIL, and up to 1000 women and children were abducted.[90] Up to 200 Yazidi men were reportledy killed for refusing conversion in Tal Afar prison.[90] The bodies of 12 men abducted by ISIL were found in Tikrit.[90]
  • 16 August: ISIL killed 80 Yazidis.[219] The EU agreed to supply Kurdish forces with arms,[220] and US military forces continued to attack ISIL in the area around Iraq's crucial Mosul Dam.[221]
  • 17 August: The SOHR reported that ISIL had killed 700 members of the Syrian al-Shaitat tribe, mostly civilians, after clashes over the control of two oilfields in the region.[222] The Syrian Air Force launched 26 airstrikes on Ar-Raqqah city and around al-Tabqa, killing at least 31 ISIL fighters and 8 civilians and wounding dozens of ISIL fighters and 10 civilians[223] Including the strikes launched in Deir ez-Zor area, the air strikes were overall 40.[203] Peshmerga troops, aided by the US air campaign, began an offensive to take back the Mosul Dam from ISIL, amid fears that the destruction of the dam might unleash a 65-foot wave of water that would engulf the city of Mosul and flood Baghdad.[224][225]
  • 18 August: The Syrian Air Force launched another 20 airstrikes against ISIL positions in Raqqa, cutting off water supply to the city.[226] Pope Francis, leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics, said that the international community would be justified in stopping Islamist militants in Iraq. He also said that it should not be up to a single nation to decide how to intervene in the conflict.[227]
  • 19 August: According to the SOHR, ISIL now has an army of more than 50,000 fighters in Syria.[228] American journalist James Foley was beheaded by ISIL on video tape.[229] After three days of fighting, Kurdish Peshmerga and Iraqi Army forces, helped by American air strikes, recaptured the Mosul Dam.[230] An attempt by the Iraqi Army to recapture Tikrit was repelled by the ISIL forces.[231]
  • 20 August: President Obama denounced the "brutal murder of Jim Foley by the terrorist group ISIL."[232]
  • 21 August: The US military admitted that a covert rescue attempt involving US Special Operations forces had been made to rescue James Foley and other Americans held captive in Syria by ISIL. The ensuing gunfight resulted in one US soldier being injured. The rescue was unsuccessful, as the captives were not in the location targeted. This was the first known engagement by US ground forces with suspected ISIL militants. The US Defense Secretary warned that ISIL were tremendously well-funded, adding, "They have no standard of decency, of responsible human behaviour", and that they were an imminent threat to the US.[233]
  • 22 August: The US is considering airstrikes on ISIL in Syria, which would draw US military forces directly into the Syrian Civil War, as President Obama develops a long-term strategy to defeat ISIL.[234] As a reprisal for a car bombing which killed three militiamen, members of the Shi'ite al-Zarkoshi militia killed 73 Sunni civilians in the Musab bin Umair mosque.
  • 24 August: ISIL forces captured Tabqa air base after two weeks of siege and fighting.[235][236] A Syrian Mig-21 was destroyed.[237] Overall, 346 ISIL fighters and 200-365 Syrian soldiers were killed in the battle for Tabqa, while 150d Syrian soldiers were reportedly captured and 700 managed to retreat.[citation needed][238][239][240] A Sheikh and a tribal leader were abducted by ISIL in Khuthrniya village in Iraq.[90]
  • 24–25 August: 14 elderly Yazidi men were killed by ISIL in the Sheikh Mand Shrine, and the Jidala village Yazidi shrine was blown up.[90]
  • 26 August: ISIL carried out a suicide attack in Baghdad killing 15 people and injuring 37 others.[241]
  • 27 August: ISIL captured more than 20 soldiers in the farmlands of Tabqa,[citation needed] while 27 soldiers and 8 ISIL fighters were killed in fighting at the Athraya checkpoint in eastern Hama countryside.[242] 160-250 Syrian soldiers captured at Tabqa air base were killed by ISIL between 27 and 28 August.[238]
  • 28 August: ISIL beheaded a Lebanese Army sergeant whom they had kidnapped, Ali al-Sayyed.[243] The group also beheaded a Kurdish Peshmerga fighter in response to Kurdistan's alliance with the United States.[244] A Syrian air strike destroyed ISIL headquarters and killed six ISIL military leaders in the city of Mohasan.[238][citation needed] Another air strike killed or wounded dozens of ISIL militants near Baath Dam.[245]
  • 29 August: UK Prime Minister David Cameron raised the UK's terror level to "severe" and committed to fight radical Islam "at home and abroad".[246]
  • 31 August: Iraqi military forces supported by Shia militias and American airstrikes broke the two-month siege of the northern Iraqi town of Amerli by ISIL militants.[247] 25 ISIL members were killed in the fight and 15 captured, while Iraqi losses were 16 killed, 6 killed while captive and 39 wounded.[248][249][250] 19 captive Sunnis were killed by ISIL in Saadiya for refusing to swear allegiance.[90] At the end of August the bodies of six truck drivers abducted by ISIL on 10 June and of at least 15 Iraqi soldiers captured and killed between 13 and 20 June were found in Suleiman Bek.[90] German Federal Minister of Defence Ursula von der Leyen announced that Germany will send weapons to arm 4,000 Peshmerga fighters in Iraq fighting ISIL.[251] The delivery will include 16,000 assault rifles, 40 machine guns, 240 rocket-propelled grenades, 500 MILAN anti-tank missiles with 30 launchers and 10,000 hand grenades, with a total value of around 70 million euros. In order to prevent an excessive accumulation of arms, the Bundeswehr seconded six liaison officers to Erbil.[252]
  • The U.N. stated that at least 1,265 civilians and 155 members of the security forces were killed in Iraq during August, without counting the casualties in Anbar province and northern Iraq under ISIL control; 1,370 more people were wounded and 600,000 displaced.[253][254]
  • By the end of the month, more than 5,000 Yazidi civilians had been killed and 5,000 to 7,000 abducted by ISIL, according to the United Nations.[255]

September 2014Edit

  • 1 September: The Iraqi Army recaptured the town of Suleiman Bek and killed 23 Chechen ISIL militants.[256][257] The German government's Cabinet decision to arm the Kurdish Peshmerga was ratified in the Bundestag by a "vast majority" of votes, after an emotional debate.[258] The Yazidi villages of Kotan, Hareko and Kharag Shafrsky were set on fire by ISIL.[90]
  • 2 September: ISIL released a video showing the beheading of American journalist Steven Sotloff.[259][260] Kurdish Peshmerga recaptured from ISIL the town of Zumar. A hundred relatives of the cadets and soldiers killed at Camp Speicher in June broke into the Iraqi Parliament to ask for explanations.[261]
  • 4 September: A member of ISIL issued a threat to President Vladimir Putin, vowing to oust him over his support of Bashar al-Assad's government.[262][263] An ISIL self-appointed court sentenced to death and then ordered the killing of 14 men.[90] Sheik Maisar Farman el-Waka, a candidate of the April general election was killed in public by ISIL in al-Houd village along with his two brothers.[90] Another candidate of the parliamentary elections, Zaina Nouri Mullah Abdallah el-Ansi, was killed in Mosul.[264]
  • 5 September: The German Bundeswehr dispatched the first of a series of cargo planes to Iraq, loaded with helmets, vests, radios, and infrared night-vision rifle scopes. After a stopover in Baghdad for inspection, the aircraft will deliver the equipment to the Kurdish fighters.[265] Qassem Soleimani, Commander of the elite Iranian Revolutionary Guard Quds Force, has been to the Iraqi city of Amirli, to work with the United States in pushing back ISIL.[266][267][268]
  • 7 September: the governor of Anbar province, Ahmad Khalaf al-Dulaimi, was seriously wounded by mortar fire in the newly retaken town of Barwana.[269][270][271] ISIL killed 40 people in Mosul after trial by a self-appointed court.[90] About 40 men were abducted from Tal Ali village for having burned ISIL flags after ISIL retreat from the village. The men were released some days later, after having been tortured.[90]
  • 8 September: ISIL carried out a double suicide attack in a town north of Baghdad, killing nine people and wounding 70 others.[272] An ISIL attack against the town of Duloeliyah killed at least 20 civilians and wounded 120 more.[90] Nouri Al-Maliki was succeeded by Haider Al-Abadi as Prime Minister of Iraq.
  • 9 September: Peshmerga fighters discovered a mass grave containing the bodies of 14 civilians, presumably Yazidis.[90] Another Imam was killed in Mosul for refusing to declare his fealty to ISIL.[90]
  • 10 September: President Obama announced a new rollback policy and coalition in the Middle East after ISIL beheaded two American journalists and seized control of large portions of Syria and Iraq.[273]
America will lead a broad coalition to roll back this terrorist threat... We will ultimately destroy, ISIL through a comprehensive counterterrorism strategy.
  • 13 September: UK humanitarian aid worker David Cawthorne Haines, whose life had been threatened by Mohammed Emwazi in the Steven Sotloff video, was purportedly beheaded in a video.[274]
  • 14 September: A number of Algerian commanders of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb broke allegiance with al-Qaeda, swore loyalty to ISIL and created the group Jund al-Khilafah.
  • 15 September: The Battle of Suq al Ghazi ended with a US–Iraqi win.[275]
  • 17 September: ISIL launched a major offensive to capture the YPG-controlled city of Kobani/Ayn al-Arab.[276][277]
  • 18 September: The Australian Federal Police, Australian Security Intelligence Organisation, Queensland Police and New South Wales Police launched the largest counterterrorism operation in Australian history. The targets were ISIL-linked networks thought to be planning to launch mass-casualty attacks in populated areas. Fifteen people were arrested in the raids with one being charged with terrorism offenses.[278][279]
  • 20 September: The hostages from the Turkish consulate in Mosul who had been captured on 11 June 2014 were released.[280]
  • 21 September: ISIL forces overran the Iraqi military base of Saqlawiyah and captured the towns of Saqlawiyah and Sicher;[281] 155–370 or more Iraqi soldiers were killed in the attack, with 68–400 being captured.[282]
  • 21 September: Official spokesman Abu Mohammad al-Adnani released a speech encouraging Muslims around the world to kill non-Muslims.[283][284][285]
  • 22 September: Two weeks after her abduction, Iraqi human rights activist Samira Salih al-Nuaimi was publicly executed by ISIL.[286]
  • 22 September: Iraqi media stated that 300 Iraqi soldiers were killed by an ISIL chlorine gas attack in Saqlawiyah.[287][288][289]
  • 23 September: Aerial operations began over Syria. Cruise missiles and precision-guided bombs struck ISIL targets in Syria,[290] and military aircraft from Bahrain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates participated in the airstrikes against ISIL.[291] The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights estimated that about 400 ISIL fighters died in the airstrikes.[292] Nasr Al-Fahd, representing ISIL, issued a fatwa which was translated by Walid Shoebat. Shoebat claims the fatwa included murdering millions of Americans and Western Europeans.[293][294]
  • 24 September: Jund al-Khilafah, an Algerian group affiliated to ISIL, beheaded French tourist Hervé Goudel, who had been kidnapped on 21 September, as a reprisal for French intervention against ISIL.[295] A group of influential Muslim scholars publish an Open Letter to Baghdadi claiming al-Baghdadi's interpretation of the Quran is illegitimate.[296][297][298]
  • 29 September: ISIL released a third video showing journalist John Cantlie. As in previous videos, Cantlie appears alone, wearing an orange prison uniform. The scripted video criticises US president Barack Obama's strategy of using airstrikes to defeat ISIL.[299]
  • 30 September: Kurdish Peshmerga forces recaptured the town and border crossing of Rabia.[300]
  • According to the UN, at least 1,119 people (854 civilians and 265 members of the security forces) died from "acts of violence" in Iraq during September, excluding those who died in Anbar province and those who succumbed to "secondary effects" such as lack of food, water and medical care; 1,946 were wounded, 1,604 of them civilians.[301][302][303]

October 2014Edit

  • 1 October: The town of Taza Kharmatho was retaken by Peshmerga and Iraqi Army forces, but remained uninhabitable, due to the booby traps that had been left by ISIL.[304]
  • 2 October: The Turkish Parliament voted 298:98 to authorise anti-ISIL operations, following concerns over ISIL advances close to Turkey's borders. Turkey will allow foreign anti-ISIL military operations to be launched from within its borders and gave authorisation for Turkey's military to be sent into Syria.[305]
  • 3 October: Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced that Australia would contribute eight F/A-18F Super Hornets to aid the war effort against Islamic extremists in Iraq. The aircraft join a KC-30A Tanker and an E-7A Wedgetail AEW&C aircraft already deployed.[306]
  • 3 October: ISIL released a video showing the beheading of British aid worker Alan Henning and threatened American aid worker Peter Kassig.[307]
  • 4 October: ISIL captured the Iraqi city of Kabisa.[308] Two bombs killed seven people and wounded 18 in the towns of Tarmiyah and Husseiniya.[308] An Iraqi officer and seven soldiers were killed in two ambushes in Diyala province in Iraq.[308]
  • 5 October: A joint ISIL–al-Nusra invasion of Lebanon was beaten back by Hezbollah.[309] 800 ISIL militants in Libya partially take over the Libyan town of Derna.[310]
  • 7 October: The House of Commons of the Parliament of Canada voted 157:134 to authorise the Royal Canadian Air Force to conduct airstrikes against ISIL in Iraq.[311]
  • 8 October: Terrorists claiming to be "Islamic State in Gaza" took responsibility for an explosion in the French Cultural Centre in Gaza City.[312][313] However, a group by the same name denied responsibility for the blast.[313] The blast did not result in casualties. The incident was downplayed by Hamas as being a generator malfunction.[314]
  • 10 October: Spanish Defence Minister Pedro Morenés announces that Spain will send 300 troops to Iraq in non-combat roles.[315]
  • 11 October: Car bombings killed at least 38 people in Baghdad.[316] Additionally, ISIL dispatched 10,000 fighters from Syria and Mosul to take over Baghdad.[317][318] Also, Iraqi Army forces and Anbar tribesmen threatened to abandon their weapons if the US does not send in ground troops to halt ISIL's advance.[319]
  • 12 October: Two improvised explosive devices killed General Ahmad Sadak al Dulaymi, chief of police of the Anbar Governorate province, and three others.[320]
  • 13 October: US planes launched 21 strikes against ISIL forces, near the besieged town of Kobanî in northern Syria, near the border with Turkey.[321]
    A U.S. Navy F-18E Super Hornet receives fuel from a KC-135 Stratotanker over Iraq before conducting an airstrike, Oct. 4, 2014. The aircraft are supporting operations against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL

    A U.S. Navy F-18E Super Hornet receives fuel from a KC-135 Stratotanker over Iraq before conducting an airstrike, 4 October 2014. The aircraft are supporting operations against ISIL

    Also, ISIL fighters made it within 25 kilometres (15.5 miles) of the Baghdad Airport.[322]
  • 14 October: ISIL forces captured the Iraqi city of Hīt, after the 300-strong Iraqi Army garrison abandoned its local base, and about 180,000 civilians fled the area.[323][324] Five Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan leaders in Pakistan swore loyalty to ISIL, after fundamentalists in Egypt and Libya had done the same several days earlier.[325] A suicide car bombing killed 25 people in Baghdad, including Iraqi Parliament member and deputy leader of the Badr Organisation Ahmed al-Khafaji; three others were killed by a roadside bomb.[326] Reports spread about the formation of small Syrian groups which target and kill ISIL members in ISIL-controlled territory.[327]
  • Between 7 and 14 October 42 people were killed in Turkey in clashes between Kurdish fighters and ISIL supporters, 12 of them in Diyarbakir.[328]
  • 15 October: The US anti-ISIL operation was named "Operation Inherent Resolve".[329] The US launched 18 airstrikes against ISIL in Kobani.[330][331] Forty-six captives were killed by ISIL in Mosul.[332]
  • 16 October: By this date, ISIL had been driven out of most of Kobani.[333] Four car bombings killed 36 people and wounded 98 in Baghdad[334] Italian Defence Minister Roberta Pinotti announced that Italy would send 280 soldiers to train Kurdish fighters, along with two Predator drones and a KC-767 refuelling plane.[335]
  • 17 October: Iraqi Army troops and police stormed an ISIL camp in Jaberiya, killing 60 ISIL militants; other senior ISIL figures were killed in another attack near Ramadi[336] Three MiG-21 or MiG-23 fighters were being flown by ISIL militants who were undergoing training by former Iraqi Ba'ath officers at Al Jarrah air base.[337] Yemen leaders of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula urged all jihadists to join ISIL in the fight against Western "crusaders".[338][339]
  • 17–18 October: The US launched 25 airstrikes against ISIL in Syria and Iraq.[330][340]
  • 18 October: Car bombings killed 30 people in Baghdad.[341][342]
  • 19 October: A suicide bomber killed 19 people and wounded 28 others outside a Shia mosque in Baghdad.[343][344]
  • 20 October: Airstrikes killed 60 ISIL militants in the Anbar province in Iraq.[330][345] Suicide bombers and car bombings killed 43 people and wounded 85 others in Baghdad and Karbala.[346][347] After preventing Kurdish reinforcements from reaching Kobani for weeks, Turkey finally agreed to let Peshmerga reinforcements pass through Turkish territory. The US Air Force started dropping weapons and supplies to the Kurds comprising the resistance in the town.[348] ISIL members wounded and tried to kidnap Abu Nissa, the leader of the rebel group Liwa Thuwwar al-Raqqa, in the Turkish town of Urfa[349][350] The remaining 2,000 Yazidis in the Sinjar area—mainly volunteer fighters but also hundreds of civilians—were forced by ISIL to retreat to the Sinjar mountains.[351]
  • 21 October: A series of bombings killed at least 30 people and wounded 57 others in Baghdad, while mortar shells fell inside the Green Zone.[352] A suicide attack killed 15 Peshmerga fighters and wounded 20 near Mosul Dam.[353] According to the SOHR, 40 fighters from Jabhat al-Nusra, including an emir, joined ISIL.[354] It was also reported that the US had accidentally airdropped weapons to ISIL.[355][356]
  • 22 October: Car bombings killed 37 people and wounded 66 in Baghdad.[357] Syrian Air Force claimed that it destroyed two fighter jets previously captured by ISIL at Jarrah air base.[358] An American volunteering with the YPG claimed that ISIL have used chemical weapons during the siege of Kobani, providing photos.[359]
  • 23 October: ISIL militants recapture a hill to the west of Kobani.[360] The village of Zauiyat albu Nimr and the surrounding area, in Anbar province, was captured by ISIL after weeks of fighting with the Sunni Albu Nimr tribe; 60 people were captured.[361][362] Al-Sheikh Khayri, a Yazidi commander, was killed in the fighting on Mount Sinjar.[363] Abu Qahtan, an ISIL commander, was killed in fights with Kurdish Peshmerga near Mosul Dam.[364] The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights announced that 464 ISIL militants, 57 Al-Nusra militants and 32 civilians had been killed in U.S. air strikes since September.[365][366] Also, ISIL fighters made it within 25 kilometers (15.5 miles) of the Baghdad Airport.[322]
  • 24 October: ISIL fighters take control of air-drop zone outside Kobani.[367] Iraqi officials confirm that ISIL militants have targeted Iraqi troops with chemical weapons.[368][369] Evidence from Kobani suggests ISIL used chemical weapons against defenders.[370]
  • 25 October: The Iraqi Army retakes the town of Jurf al-Sakhar (67 Iraqi soldiers and pro-government militias and 300 ISIL militants were killed in the battle, according to Iraqi sources[371]), while Peshmerga forces retake the town of Zumar, and ten surrounding villages, killing 81 ISIL militants.[372][373][374] The U.S. Air Force launched 22 air strikes between 24 and 25 October.[375] Nidal Malik Hasan, the killer of the 2009 Fort Hood shooting, requested "to be made a citizen of the Islamic State".[376] Six Lebanese soldiers, two civilians and an at least nine militants were killed in clashes with ISIL-linked Sunni militants in the city of Tripoli, which also led to the arrest of 20 suspects.[377][378][379][380] A suicide bomber killed 8 Shiite militiamen and wounded 17 in the Iraqi town of Taji.[381]
  • 26 October: during the Siege of Kobani, ISIL failed for the fourth time to capture the border gate with Turkey[382] in the northern al-Jomrok neighbourhood.[383] The Iraqi army retook four villages in the Himreen mountains.[384][385] Two bombs killed five people and wounded 15 in Baghdad.[386][387]
  • 27 October: ISIL car bombings killed 27 Iraqi soldiers and Shia militamen and wounded 60 in Jurf al-Sakhar, and killed 15 civilians and wounded 23 in Baghdad.[388][389][390][391] The U.S. Air Force launched 11 more air strikes in Iraq and Syria.[392] The Lebanese Army took the last positions held by ISIL militants in Tripoli, after 11 Lebanese soldiers, eight civilians and 22 militants were killed in three days of battle; 162 militants were captured.[393] ISIL released another video with British hostage John Cantlie, in which he claimed that the city of Kobani was mostly under ISIL control, with only a few pockets of Kurdish resistance remaining. He also claimed that the Battle of Kobani was "largely over", and that ISIL forces were mostly mopping up in the city. The captions in the video, displaying the Turkish flags at the border, claimed that it was filmed by one of the four ISIL drones. However, the video has been deemed to be ISIL propaganda, especially since analysts claim that it was filmed about a week earlier. Additionally, 200 Iraqi Kurdish forces will soon arrive in Kobani as reinforcements, via the Syrian-Turkish border.[394]
  • 29 October: Australian ISIL leader and recruiter Mohammad Ali Baryalei was confirmed to have been killed.[395] Fifty Free Syrian Army and 150 Kurdish Peshmerga reinforcements reached Kobani.[396][397] The US launched 14 air strikes in Iraq and Syria between 28 and 29 October.[398] Two-hundred and twenty members of the Albu Nimr tribe were killed while captive by ISIL, 70 in Hīt and 150 in Ramadi.[399][400][401][402] ISIL forces captured three gas wells east of Palmyra in Homs province, and killed 30 Syrian Army soldiers in an attack on the Shaer gas field.[180][403][404] A suicide bomber killed five policemen and wounded 18 civilians in Youssifiyah near Baghdad.[405] ISIL released the last 25 of a group of 150 Kurdish children previously kidnapped from Kobani.[406] The Iraqi Army retook six villages near Baiji.[407]
  • 30 October: ISIL captured the Shaer gas field near Homs, Syria.[408][409] Norway announced that it would send 120 soldiers to Iraq to help train the Iraqi Army to fight ISIL.[410]
  • 31 October: The UN stated that overall 15,000 foreign fighters had joined ISIL in Iraq and Syria.[411][412][413][414] While battle raged in Baiji between ISIL and the Iraqi Army and Shia militia, bombings killed 15 people and wounded 34 in and near Baghdad.[415][416][417] Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was proclaimed caliph of the "Islamic Caliphate of Derna" established by jihadists in Derna, Libya.[418]
  • The UN reported that at least 1,273 Iraqis—856 civilians and 417 members of the security forces—were killed "by violence" during October (379 civilians in Baghdad alone) and that 2,010 were wounded, not counting the casualties in Anbar province and other ISIL-held areas.[303]

November 2014Edit

  • 1 November: ISIL killed 50–67 more displaced members of the Albu Nimr tribe, in the village of Ras al-Maa.[419] Thirty-five bodies of members of the same tribe were found in another mass grave.[420][421] News spread that ISIL had started killing former police and army officers in areas under its control—especially Mosul—in order to prevent possible uprisings.[422][423] Among those killed were Colonels Mohammed Hassan and Issa Osman.[422] Suicide bombers and car bombings killed at least 24 people and wounded dozens in the Baghdad area.[424][425] Ten US airstrikes were launched in Syria and Iraq.[330][426]
  • 2 November: ISIL killed 50–75 more members of the Albu Nimr tribe in Ras al-Maa and Haditha and 17 were kidnapped.[427][428][429] Overall, 322 members of the Albu Nimr tribe had been killed by 2 November.[428] Car bombings killed 44 Shia pilgrims and wounded 75 in Baghdad.[430][431] Also, in response to the US-led airstrikes, representatives from Ahrar ash-Sham attended a meeting with the al-Nusra Front, the Khorasan Group, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, and Jund al-Aqsa, which sought to unite several hard-line groups against the US-led Coalition and other moderate Syrian Rebel groups.[432]
  • 3 November: ISIL claimed to have captured the Jahar gas field in Homs province, Syria.[433][434] After ransoms had been paid, 234 Yazidis kidnapped in August were released.[435] Canadian planes launched their first airstrikes against ISIL near Fallujah.[330][436][437] US planes launched 14 airstrikes on 2–3 November.[330][438] ISIL killed 36 more members of the Albu Nimr tribe in Ras al-Maa.[439][440]
  • 4 November: ISIL released 93 Syrian Kurds kidnapped in February.[441]
  • 5 November: A leader of the Albu Nimr tribe stated that 540 of its members had been killed by ISIL.[442][443] US allies conducted 23 airstrikes between 3 and 5 November in Iraq and Syria.[444] The Syrian Army and militia recaptured the Jhar and Mahr gas fields near Homs from ISIL.[445]
  • 7 November: Car bombings in Baiji, killed eight servicemen and policemen—among them Faisal Malek—and wounded 15.[446] The US decided to send 1,500 more troops to Iraq, increasing the number of US troops stationed there to 3,000.[447] Also, a US airstrike killed 50 ISIL militants near Mosul, including Abu Muslim al-Turkmani, the top ISIL Iraqi commander.[448] The airstrike also killed Abu Ayman al-Iraqi, ISIL's Military Chief, who was replaced by Abu Suleiman al-Naser.[449] Rumours spread that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi may have been killed or seriously wounded in the attack.[450][451]
  • 8 November: Twenty-seven ISIL fighters were poisoned by Syrian rebels who had infiltrated as cooks into the Fath El-Shahel camp; twelve were killed.[452] Six car bombings killed 40 people and wounded 90 in Baghdad and Ramadi.[453]
  • 9 November: The Syrian Air Force bombed the ISIL-held town of Al-Bab in Aleppo province, killing 21 and wounding over 100.[454]
  • 10 November: Seventy more members of the Albu Nimr tribe were killed by ISIL near Hit.[455] The main Egyptian terrorist group operating in Sinai Ansar Beit al-Maqdis pledged allegiance to ISIL.[456] RAF drones were launched in their first airstrikes against ISIL in Iraq.[330][457]
  • 11 November: A car bombing killed eight people and wounded 13 in Baiji, which had been largely recaptured by the Iraqi Army; more car bombings killed nine people and wounded 24 in and near Baghdad.[458]
  • 12 November: Kurdish forces in Kobanî cut off a road used as a supply route by ISIL. The road connects Kobanî with Ar-Raqqah. The Kurdish forces managed to cut off the supply route from Ar-Raqqah after capturing parts of the strategic Mistanour Hill.[459] Idris Nassan, a local official in Kobanî, claimed that ISIL's control over the town had been reduced to less than 20 percent.[460][461]
  • 14 November: The Iraqi Army retook the city of Baiji from ISIL.[462] Car bombings killed 17 people and wounded 57 in Baghdad.[462]
  • 16 November: ISIL released a video showing a beheaded American hostage, Peter Kassig, and the beheading of 15 Syrian Army prisoners.[463] Kurdish fighters captured six buildings from Islamic State militants besieging the Syrian town of Kobani, and seized a large haul of their weapons and ammunition.[464]
  • 21 November: ISIL disrupts cellular phone calls in Mosul. ISIL fears informants are passing information to Iraqi forces.[465]
  • 22 November: A German father fighting at Mount Sinjar asks for more US airstrikes in the region between Sinjar and Dahuk, so that he and his family can go back to their lands and "live in peace".[466]
  • 23 November: Iraqi and Peshmerga forces began a campaign to retake the towns of Jalawla and Saadiya in the Diyala Governorate, with a senior official in the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan party declaring the liberation of both towns.[467] A Kurdish commander declared all of Jalawla to be under the control of Peshmerga forces. Several casualties were sustained when planted bombs left behind by ISIL exploded. Dozens of soldiers were wounded in the fighting.[468] Ammar Hikmat, deputy governor of Saladin Province, announced an attack by Iraqi forces on ISIL on the Baghdad-Samarra road.[469] Iraqi TV reported the road successfully opened.[470]
  • 25 November: The Syrian Arab Air Force launched a series of airstrikes on Ar-Raqqah, killing at least 60 people.[330][471] A monitor for the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported at least 63 deaths, over half of which were civilian.[472] The SOHR also reported the stoning to death of two young men by ISIL, for alleged homosexuality. The killings occurred in the Deir ez-Zor Governorate, one in Mayadin and the other in Deir ez-Zor.[473]
  • 29 November: ISIL launched a counter-attack in Kobanî, by detonating four suicide cars and explosive belts, following clashes between the two conflicting parties in the town. According to the SOHR, eight YPG fighters and 17 ISIL fighters were killed in the clashes.[474] According to the German news outlet 'Der Spiegel', ISIL fighters also attacked YPG positions near the border gate from Turkish soil.[475] According to the SOHR, YPG fighters crossed the Turkish border and attacked ISIL positions on Turkish soil, before pulling back to Syria. Soon afterwards, the Turkish Army regained control of the border crossing and silos area.[476]

December 2014Edit

  • 2 December: According to reports, Saja al-Dulaimi, one of al-Bagdadi's wives—or a former wife—and his daughter were arrested in Lebanon and held for questioning.[477]
  • 6 December: The Libyan Army begins a ground assault of the ISIL-occupied city of Derna, Libya, and army units moved within a few kilometres of Derna, retaking control of villages and roads leading to the city.[478]
  • 10 December: Man charged on accounts of homosexuality then thrown off a building in northern Iraq by the Islamic state, then he was stoned to death by a crowd.[479][480]
  • 12 December: F-16 jets from Morocco join the Counter-DAESH Coalition effort, hitting ISIL targets near Baghdad and other unidentified areas.[481]
  • 13 December: ISIL advanced within 32 km of the city of Ramadi in the Al Anbar Governorate, west of Baghdad. The city of Hīt is currently confirmed to be under ISIL control.[482]
  • 14 December: During the early morning hours of 14 December, U.S. ground forces allegedly clashed with ISIL alongside the Iraqi Army and Tribal Forces near Ein al-Asad base, west of Anbar, in an attempt to repel them from the base where about 100 U.S. advisers are stationed, when ISIL attempted to overrun the base. According to a field commander of the Iraqi Army in Anbar province, "the U.S. force equipped with light and medium weapons, supported by F-18, was able to inflict casualties against fighters of ISIL organisation, and forced them to retreat from the al-Dolab area, which lies 10 kilometres from Ain al-Assad base."[483][484][485][486][487] This is said to be the first encounter between the United States and ISIL, in four years. However, this claim has been called "false" by The Pentagon.[488][489]
  • 16 December: India bans support for ISIL, but some officials fear that the ban may impact the fate of 39 Indian construction workers who were captured by ISIL in Iraq.[490]
  • 17 December: Peshmerga forces launched the Sinjar offensive from Zumar and managed to break the Siege of Mount Sinjar, recapture more than 700 square kilometres of territory,[491] close in on Tal Afar, clear areas north of Mount Sinjar,[492] and pushed into the city of Sinjar.[493] The offensive is ongoing as of 17 December
  • 18 December: Three rebel groups near the Golan Heights region, which had previously been aided by the United States, switched sides and pledged loyalty to ISIL.[494]
  • 19 December: US General James Terry announced that the number of U.S. airstrikes to date on ISIL had increased to 1,361.[495]
  • 21 December: The Sinjar offensive ends in a decisive Kurdish victory, and the city of Sinjar is momentarily liberated, as ISIL forces retreated to Tell Afar and Mosul.[496]
  • 22 December: Kurdish forces claim that ISIL control of Kobanî was reduced to 30%.[497]
  • 23 December: U.S. conducts 10 air strikes in Syria and Iraq.[498] The air strikes destroy oil combining equipment and kill some unknown number of fighters.
  • 24 December: SOHR reported that ISIL shot down an Anti-ISIL Coalition warplane near Ar-Raqqah, and ISIL supporters claimed on social media, with photos, to have captured the Jordanian pilot.[499] The US said the plane crashed, but was not shot down. Also, an ISIL suicide bombing in Madin killed 15 pro-government Sunni fighters and 7 Iraqi soldiers, and wounded 55.[500]
  • 25 December: Iraqi police reported that the newly appointed ISIL governor of Mosul was killed in a Counter-ISIL Coalition airstrike. Hassan Saeed Al-Jabouri, also known as Abu Taluut, had been in office less than 25 days, replacing another man killed earlier in December 2014. It was also revealed that US planned to retake Mosul in January 2015.[501]
  • 27 December: The U.S. and other Coalition nations conducted 23 airstrikes against ISIL.[330][502] The airstrikes destroyed ISIL vehicles, buildings, and fighting positions, and hit a large ISIL unit.

2015 eventsEdit

Index: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August.

January 2015Edit

  • 4 January: ISIL troops attacked Saudi Arabia again, near the border city of Arar, Saudi Arabia, killing four Saudi border guards. Four ISIL militants were also killed in the clashes.[503][504]
  • 5 January: In Kobanî, Kurdish YPG units captured the governmental and security district and the al-Refia, al-Sena’a, al-Tharura, and al-Banat schools. YPG also advanced in the Mishtanour neighbourhood south of the town. According to SOHR, the YPG now controls at least 80% of Kobanî. At least 14 ISIL militants were killed in the clashes.[505]
  • 6 January: A female suicide bomber detonated her vest at a police station in Istanbul's central Sultanahmet district, the perperator was identified as Diana Ramazova, a Chechen-Russian citizen from Dagestan. Turkish police are currently investigating Ramazova's possible links to al-Qaeda or the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. Further investigation revealed that suspect had photos with insurgents from ISIS [506][507]
  • 10 January: Suicide bombing in the Tripoli café in Lebanon kills 9 and wounds 30. It is initially attributed to ISIL militants,[508] though other reports claim that only the al-Nusra Front is responsible.[509]
  • 12 January: ISIL battles for the town of Gwer, which was re-taken by Iraqi forces in August 2014. ISIL kills 30 Kurds in the conflict, despite US-led Coalition airstrikes.[510] ISIL kidnaped 21 Christians in Tripoli, Libya.[511][512]
  • 13 January: Someone claiming to represent ISIS hacked U.S. Military's Twitter account and threatened vengeance on American soldiers for the US's intervention against ISIS, and inserted a video that warned ISIS about a U.S Military attack.[513] ISIL affiliate group, Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, claimed to have kidnapped and killed an Egyptian police officer, Ayman al-Desouky.[514]
  • 14 January: Christopher Lee Cornell, an alleged ISIL sympathiser, was arrested for plotting to bomb the US Capitol.[515]
  • 17 January: Fighting broke out in the Syrian town of Al-Hasakah between Syrian government forces and Kurdish militia, namely the People's Protection Units (YPG). The two sides, having previously coexisted and having focused on other enemies, clashed when government forces took control of buildings understood to be demilitarised, according to the SOHR.[516]
  • 18 January: Israel arrests 7 Arabs who admitted being ISIL members. The allegation was that they were caught just before executing an attack and were practising on animals how to behead people.[517]
  • 19 January: A Canadian special forces commander said that Canadian snipers "neutralized" ISIL militants in Iraq, after "advisers" operating at the front lines of the conflict came under fire.[518] Also, in Kobanî, YPG fighters fully recaptured the Mistanour Hill south of Kobanî, killing 11 ISIL militants. By recapturing this hill, the YPG controlled the ISIL supply routes to Aleppo and Ar-Raqqah. By that time, ISIL control ofKobanî was reduced to 15%.[519] Additionally, Syrian government loyalists and Kurdish fighters in Al-Hasakah reached a cease-fire, although sporadic clashes continued.[520]
  • 20 January: ISIL threatens to kill two Japanese hostages, Kenji Goto Jogo, a journalist, and Haruna Yukawa, a military company operator, unless a ransom of 200 million US$ is paid.[521] Also, the SOHR reported that al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIL, had been wounded in an airstrike in Al-Qa'im, an Iraqi border town held by ISIL, and as a result, withdrew to Syria.[330][522][523]
  • 21 January: Kurdish Peshmerga fighters began a planned operation to liberate Mosul, liberating multiple villages neighbouring Mosul, and disrupting essential ISIL supply routes between Mosul, Tel Afar, and Syria. Also, U.S. airstrikes were conducted to assist the Kurdish Peshmerga fighters prior to and during the liberation operation.[330] An estimated 200 ISIL fighters were killed on the first day of the clashes.[524][525] The Peshmerga also positioned themselves on three fronts near Mosul. U.S. airstrikes near the Iraqi towns of Sinjar, Kirkuk, and Ramadi destroyed ISIL heavy weaponry and killed an unknown number of fighters.[330][526]
  • 23 January: Kurdish forces reported firing 20 Grad missiles into Mosul, upon receiving intelligence that ISIL militants were gathering to meet near the city's Zuhour neighbourhood. Firing from about 19 kilometres (12 mi) north of Mosul, Captain Shivan Ahmed said that the rockets hit their targets. ISIL claimed that the rockets also hit civilians.[527]
  • 24 January: The Lebanese Army repelled another joint ISIL-al-Nusra incursion near Arsal, leading to the deaths of 5 Lebanese soldiers.[528]
  • 25 January: ISIL published a video declaring the execution of Haruna Yukawa,[529] and have revised their demands. They no longer seek the $200 million US$ ransom; instead, they demand the release of Sajida Mubarak Atrous al-Rishawi in exchange for Kenji Goto and Muath al-Kasasbeh, a Jordanian fighter pilot.[530][531] Also, the village of Mamid was recaptured by YPG and FSA fighters. ISIL lost 12 militants and a vehicle in the clashes.[532] On the same day, YPG fighters cut the ISIL supply route to Kobanî, forcing ISIL into retreat.[533] By that time, ISIL control of Kobanî was reduced to 10%. However, ISIL dispatched an additional 140 fighters, most of them under the age of 18, to help retake the city of Kobanî.[534][535]
  • 26 January: The YPG, with some assistance from US airstrikes, forced remaining ISIL forces in the city of Kobanî to retreat, and the YPG managed to enter the eastern outlying areas,[330][535][536][537] thus fully recapturing the city of Kobanî.[538] However, ISIL resistance persists in the eastern outskirts of Kobanî, and the surrounding Kobanî region remains under ISIL occupation.[539]
  • 27 January: Suspected ISIL terrorists in Libya killed eight people, after storming the Corinthia Hotel in Tripoli and detonating a car bomb.[540][541] Also, YPG fighters recaptured the Helnej village southeast of Kobanî, and they also besieged ISIL forces in the southern countryside of the city.[542] The next day, YPG and FSA fighters recaptured Kolama village, Seran mall, and Noroz hall.[543] Later on 27 January, YPG fighters drove out the remaining ISIL forces in the southeastern corner of the City of Kobanî, thus securing 100% control of the city.[544]
  • 29 January: An ISIL militant claimed that ISIL has smuggled 4,000 militants into the European Union under the guise of civilian refugees. ISIL claimed that the fighters were planning retaliatory attacks.[545]
  • 31 January: ISIL claims to have beheaded Japanese hostage journalist Kenji Goto, the second ISIL execution of a Japanese person.[529][546][547][548]

February 2015Edit

  • 3 February: ISIL released a video of Jordanian hostage Muath al-Kasasbeh being burned to death while locked in a cage.[549] Protests occurred in Jordan with some Jordanians demanding revenge on ISIL.[550][551] Also, ISIL launched another incursion into Arsal, Lebanon, from their base in the countryside near the Syrian border to the west of Flitah, making it the deadliest ISIL incursion into Lebanon since their incursion into Arsal in August 2014.[552]
  • 4 February: Jordan executed two of its Al-Qaeda in Iraq prisoners, in retaliation against ISIL's burning of the Jordanian pilot. Sajida al-Rishawi, the Al-Qaeda in Iraq failed suicide bomber that ISIL wanted released in the proposed prisoner swap, was one of the executed terrorists.[553][554] Jordanian TV also stated that Jordanian pilot Muath Al-Kaseasbeh was believed to have been executed by ISIL as early as 3 January 2015. Jordan's King Abdullah II vowed a "relentless war" against ISIL on its own territory, for killing Al-Kaseasbeh.[550] Syrian Kurds fighting ISIL forces near Kobanî stated that they faced "no resistance" due to the fact that ISIL kept "withdrawing its fighters" whenever the Kurds entered another village.[555] Later on 4 February, Jordan began launching airstrikes on ISIL positions in Iraq, in retaliation for ISIL's killing of Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasasbeh. The airstrikes killed 55 ISIL militants in Mosul, including a senior ISIL commander known as the "Prince of Nineveh".[556]
  • 5 February: Jordanian F-16s continued an elevated airstrike campaign against ISIL, targeting militants near the de facto ISIL capital of Ar-Raqqah, Syria.[557][558]
Secretary Of State Kerry meets with King Abdullah II of Jordan, February 2015

U.S. Secretary of State Kerry, with U.S. Ambassador to Jordan Alice Wells, meets with King Abdullah II of Jordan, Crown Prince Hussein bin Abdullah, Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh, and advisers in Washington, D.C., 3 Feb. 2015.

  • 6 February: A continued round of Coalition airstrikes at Ar-Raqqah killed over 30 ISIL militants.[559]
  • 7 February: ISIL claimed that American female hostage Kayla Mueller was killed in the Jordanian airstrike on Ar-Raqqah on 5 February. However, some experts believe that she may have been killed before the date of the video's release, in order for ISIL to try to drive a wedge between the US and Jordan by blaming her death on the Jordanian airstrikes.[560][561][562]
  • 8 February: ISIL reportedly took over the town of Nofaliya in Libya, after a convoy of 40 heavily armed vehicles arrived from Sirte and ordered Nofaliya's residents to "repent" and pledge allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. The fighters appointed Ali Al-Qarqaa as the ISIL emir of the town.[563][564]
  • 9 February: US airstrikes targeted ISIL strongholds in and around the town of Hawija, a mixed Kurdish-Arab city to the west of Kirkuk, which has been under ISIL control since June 2014.[565]
  • 10 February: President Obama confirmed the death of U.S. hostage Kayla Mueller by ISIL.[560][566][567][568]
  • 12 February: ISIL fighters seized most of the town of Khan al Baghdadi, with some reports indicating 90%, which is located 85 km northwest of Ramadi. It was also reported that ISIL had launched a direct attack on the Al Asad Airbase, where nearly 300 US soldiers are stationed.[569][570]
  • 14 February: The Libyan parliament confirmed the deaths of 21 kidnapped Egyptian Coptic Christian workers in Libya, after the ISIL English language publication Dabiq had released photos claiming their execution.[571]
  • 16 February: Egypt retaliated against ISIL for the beheading of 21 Egyptian Christians by bombing ISIL camps, training sites, and weapons storage depots in neighbouring Libya.[572] 50 ISIL militants in Derna were killed by the initial airstrikes.[573]
  • 17 February: It was revealed that ISIL had launched another major assault on Erbil, coming within 45 kilometres (28 mi) of the city.[574]
  • 21 February: Pope Tawadros II of the Coptic Orthodox Church canonised 21 Coptic Christians murdered by ISIL. He announced they will be commemorated on the 8th Amshir of the Coptic calendar, or 15 February of the Gregorian calendar as Holy Martyrs and Saints.[575] Syrian Kurds launched an offensive to retake ISIL-held territories in the Al-Hasakah Governorate, specifically in the Tell Hamis area, with support from US airstrikes. At least 20 villages were liberated, and 12 militants were killed in the clashes.[576]
  • 23 February: ISIL stormed the central library of Mosul, destroying about 100,000 books, manuscripts, and newspapers.[577] ISIL abducted 150 Assyrian Christians from villages near Tal Tamr (Tell Tamer) in northeastern Syria, after launching a large offensive in the region.[578][579][580] It was reported that ISIL had burned around 8,000 rare books and manuscripts after destroying the Library of Mosul in Iraq.[581]
  • 25 February: Experts believe that three missing British schoolgirls who had gone to Turkey had travelled to Syria and joined ISIL.[582][583]
  • 26 February: The total number of Assyrian Christians abducted by ISIL from villages in northeastern Syria from 23–25 February rose to at least 220, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), a monitoring group based in Britain.[584][585] Media report about the mass destruction of historical artefacts in the Mosul Museum by ISIL is released, including statues of Lamassu. Jihadi John is identified as Mohammed Emwazi, a 27-year-old Kuwaiti-born British man from a middle-class family who grew up in West London, and graduated from the University of Westminster with a computer programming degree.[586][587]
  • 27 February: The Kurdish Democratic Union Party and Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that Kurdish fighters, aided by Coalition airstrikes, had recaptured the town of Tal Hamis, as well as most of the villages in the region that had once been occupied by ISIL.[330][588] At least 175 ISIL militants and 30 YPG fighters were killed in the clashes.[588]

March 2015Edit

  • 1 March: YPG fighters, aided by US airstrikes, drove ISIL militants out of Tell Brak, reducing the ISIL occupation in the eastern Jazira Canton to the villages between Tell Brak and Tal Hamis.[589]
  • 2 March: The Iraqi government launched a massive military operation to recapture Tikrit,[590] with 30,000 Iraqi soldiers, backed by aircraft, besieging the city on three fronts.[591]
  • 5 March: It was reported that ISIL had destroyed the ancient Assyrian city of Nimrud and its archaeological site, claiming that the city and its extensive collection of related antiquities were blasphemous.[592]
  • 6 March: It was reported that many ISIL foreign fighters and top leaders in Mosul and Tirkit were leaving with their families for Ar-Raqqah, Syria, after Iraqi began an offensive in Tikrit and news spread of the coming offensive to liberate Mosul.[593] An Iraqi antiquities official confirmed ISIL's bulldozing of the ancient Assyrian city of Nimrud, a town founded in the thirteenth century BC, with unconfirmed amounts of damage.[594] Iraqi forces and allies searched searched houses in Garma.[595] 47 ISIL fighters and 5 Iraqi fighters were killed in Garma.[595]
  • 7 March: Iraqi forces took control of the town of Khan al Baghdadi, with the support of coalition airstrikes.[596][597] Boko Haram declared allegiance to ISIL, although some experts believe that the pledge is largely symbolic.[598][599]
  • 8 March: Mohammed Emwazi, also known as "Jihadi John", apologized to his family for the shame and scrutiny he brought on them after his identity was unmasked.[600]
  • 9 March: Iraqi forces and allies recaptured Al-Alam, Iraq.[601] Infighting in ISIL left nine ISIL members dead near al-Bab city.[602] Coalition airstrikes killed and destroyed ISIL units, including workers at an oil-pumping station in the Deir ez-Zor province of Syria.[602][603][604]
  • 10 March: ISIL has reportedly destroyed the 10th-century Assyrian monastery of St. George and a Chaldean Catholic seminary near Mosul.[605]
  • 11 March: ISIL threatened on loudspeakers to behead any civilian who tried to leave Mosul. The announcement came one day after US planes dropped paper pamphlets into the city, warning of an imminent military confrontation and advising all civilians to evacuate the city.[606]
  • 12 March: ISIL's spokesman Abu Mohammad al-Adnani released an audiotape in which he welcomed a pledge of allegiance made to ISIL by Boko Haram; he described it as an expansion of the group's caliphate to West Africa.[607] Jamaat-ul-Ahrar left ISIL and rejoined Tehrik-i-Taliban.[608]
  • 13 March: The Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan swore allegiance to ISIL.[609]
  • 15 March: Fighting around the city of Tikrit led to the near-complete destruction of the tomb of Saddam Hussein located in Al-Awja. The former President's body had been moved from the mausoleum and taken to an unknown location last year, according to the local Sunni population.[610]
  • 18 March: Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was seriously wounded in a Coalition airstrike at the al-Baaj District, in the Nineveh Governorate, near the Syrian border. It was reported that his wounds were so serious that the top ISIL leaders had a meeting to discuss who would replace him if he died.[611]
  • 20 March: ISIL took responsibility for a quadruple suicide bombing, carried out in Sana'a mosque in Yemen, which killed nearly 150 people.[612]
  • 26 March: From 25 to 26 March, US-led Coalition airstrikes were reported to have killed over 150 ISIL militants in Mosul.[613]
  • 30 March: The senior Sharia official of Ansar al-Sharia in Libya, Abdullah al-Libi, defected to ISIL, along with many other Ansar al-Sharia militants.[614]
  • 31 March: Iraqi forces recaptured the city center of Tikrit,[615] with pockets of ISIL resistance consisting of 400 ISIL fighters remaining.[616]

April 2015Edit

  • 8 April: Building on their advances in the Saladin Governorate, Iraqi forces launched an offensive to liberate the Anbar Governorate from ISIL occupation, beginning with an offensive in the region around east Ramadi, backed by Coalition aircraft.[617] In retaliation, ISIL executed 300 people in the western Anbar Province. It was also reported that 10,000 Sunni tribal fighters would participate in the Anbar offensive.[618] ISIL also destroyed the 12th century Bash Tapia Castle in Mosul.[619]
  • 12 April: The Iraqi government declared that Tikrit was free of ISIL forces, stating that it was safe for residents to return home,[620] although it was later revealed that pockets of resistance continued to persist until 17 April.[621] However, many refugees from Tikrit still feared returning to the city,[620] and cleanup operations to remove the 5,000–10,000 IEDs are expected to take at least several months.[622] Additionally, Abu Maria, the top ISIL leader in Tikrit, was killed along with his top aide by Iraqi forces at the Ajeel Oil Field, near Tikrit, who caught the ISIL leaders trying to flee from the city.[623] Also, Wilayat Sinai, a group that has pledged allegiance to ISIL in the Sinai Peninsula, claimed responsibility for a bombing attack in Egypt that killed at least 13 people and wounded dozens more.[624]
  • 17 April: 130 ISIL sleeper agents hiding in Tikrit were found and killed by Iraq security forces,[621][623] which finally ended the Second Battle of Tikrit. Additionally thousands of families fleeing Iraq’s western city of Ramadi choked checkpoints leading to Baghdad on Friday, after an Islamic State advance spread panic and left security forces clinging to control. U.S. and Iraqi officials have warned that the city is at risk of falling to the Islamic State despite seven months of airstrikes by U.S. planes in Anbar.[625]
  • 18 April: ISIL's Wilayat Khorasan claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing in Afghanistan on 18 April that killed at least 33 people and injured more than 100, according to a statement believed to be from the movement.[626]
  • 19 April: ISIL produced a video showing the murder by shooting and decapitation of approximately 30 people, who were identified as Ethiopian Christians.[627]
  • 20 April: A 18-year-old boy from New Zealand joins ISIL and is reported missing.[628] New Zealand and Australia are concerned about ISIL-related terrorism at Anzac day.[629][630][631] Also, ISIL was defeated in Yarmouk Camp, with the Syrian rebel groups driving the militant organization out of the region.[632]
  • 21 April: It was reported that al-Bagdadi had not yet recovered enough from the injuries he received from a 18 March Coalition airstrike to reassume daily control of ISIL.[611]
  • 22 April: The Iraqi Army regained ground in Ramadi from ISIL forces.[633] Additionally, it was reported that Abu Ala al-Afri, the self-proclaimed Caliph's deputy and a former Iraqi physics teacher, has now been installed as the stand-in leader while Baghdadi recuperates from his injuries.[634]
  • 25 April: A video was released, in which ISIS executioners in the Homs province were shown staging a purported display of sympathy wherein they embrace and forgive two gay men for their sins, before bludgeoning them to death with huge rocks.[635] Additionally, ISIL reportedly shot down a Syrian fighter jet over the As-Suwayda Governorate, with the militant group claiming to have captured the pilot near the Khalkhalah airport.[636] In the southern Kobanî Canton, Kurdish forces and their allies surrounded Sarrin on three sides and started to push into the northern, western, and eastern suburbs of the city[637][638][639] after breaching ISIL's defense line, with reports that ISIL militants had retreated to the urban areas of Sarrin.[637] According to at least one source, YPG and FSA forces managed to enter the northern part of Sarrin.[640]

May 2015Edit

  • 1 May: The Guardian reported that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIL, was recovering in a part of Mosul from severe injuries he received during a March 2015 airstrike. It was reported that due to al-Baghdadi's incapacitation from his spinal injury, he may never be able to resume direct control of ISIL again.[641]
  • 5 May: ISIL claims that it was related to the Curtis Culwell Center attack in Garland, Texas on 3 May. The Chicago Tribune reported that there is a link between the gun used in the militant attack and the Fast and Furious U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) gunwalking scandal.[642]
  • 7 May: ISIL-backed Taliban forces launched a major offensive against the north-eastern Afghan city of Kunduz, triggering a humanitarian crisis and a wave of fleeing refugees.[643]
  • 10 May: British actor Michael Enright announced by mobile phone to the Daily Mail he had volunteered to fight ISIL.[644]
  • 13 May: ISIL claimed responsibility for the killing of 43 Shia Ismaili Muslims in a bus in Karachi, Pakistan. On the same day, the Iraqi Defense Ministry reported that Abu Alaa Afri, ISIL's Deputy Leader, had been killed in a US-led Coalition airstrike on a mosque in Tel Afar, on 12 May 2015,[645] which also killed dozens of other ISIL militants present.[646] Akram Qirbash, ISIL's top judge, was also killed in the airstrike.[645] ISIL had issued statements in which they vowed to retaliate for al-Baghdadi's injury, which Iraqi forces believed would happen through ISIL attacks in Europe.[646]
  • 14 May: An Al-Mourabitoun commander called Adnan Abu Walid Sahraoui pledged the group's allegiance to ISIL, expanding ISIL's area of operation into Mali. The group's founder, Mokhtar Belmokhtar, later issued a statement rejecting Sahraoui's announcement.[647][648]
  • On night of 15 May, ISIL militants entered the city of Ramadi, the capital of the Anbar Province, using six near-simultaneous car bombs. ISIL also released an audio tape message, with Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi calling all Muslims to fight against the Iraqi Government, in the Salahuddin, and Al Anbar Provinces, claiming that this is their duty as Muslims. The message breaks the rumors of his death.[649][650][651]
  • 15–16 May: U.S. Special Operations forces killed a senior ISIL commander named "Abu Sayyaf" during a raid intended to capture him in Deir ez-Zor, eastern Syria overnight.[652][653]
  • 17 May: ISIL forces captured the city of Ramadi, the former capital of the Islamic State of Iraq, after Iraqi government forces abandoned their posts; more than 500 people were killed.[654]
  • 21 May: ISIL forces captured the Syrian town of Tadmur and the ancient city of Palmyra, beheading dozens of Syrian soldiers.[655] Two gas fields also fell into ISIL hands.[656] According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, ISIL had by then seized 95,000 square kilometers of land, nearly half of Syria's territory.[657] ISIL also reportedly kidnapped a Syriac Catholic priest, Fr. Jacques Mourad, in the area between Palmyra and Homs.[658]
  • 22 May: Al-Walid, the last border crossing between Syria and Iraq that was held by the Syrian Army, fell to ISIL.[659] ISIL also carried out its first terror attack in Saudi Arabia, when a suicide bomber killed at least 21 people in a Shiite mosque in the city of Qatif.[660]
  • 27 May: ISIL seizes the Khunayfis phosphate mines 70 kilometres (45 mi) south of Palmyra, depriving the Syrian government of a key source of revenue.[661]
  • 28 May: ISIL claims the seizure of Sirte Airport.[662]
  • 31 May: ISIL launched an assault on the Syrian city of Al-Hasakah, with ISIL clashing with Syrian government forces on the southern outskirts, and Kurdish forces announcing their intent to protect their portion of the city. Kurdish forces killed at least 20 civilians in clashes accused of being ISIL and burned homes of suspected ISIL supporters near Ras al-Ayn and Tell Tamer.[663]

June 2015Edit

  • 1 June: ISIL begins mandating that male civilians in Mosul wear full beards and imposes harsh punishments for shaving, up to and including beheading.[664]
  • 2 June: ISIL forces close the gates of a dam in Ramadi, shutting off water to Khaldiyah and Habbaniyah.[665]
  • 3 June: ISIL forces in Afghanistan reportedly capture and execute ten militants of the Taliban in the Nangarhar province claimed by the Afghan National Army.[666]
  • 7 June: The Syrian Army reported it repelled an offensive by ISIL on the town of Hasakah. Kurdish forces also seized several villages west of Ras Al Ayn, including al-Jasoum and Sawadieh.[667]
  • 10 June: President Obama authorized the deployment of 450 American advisors to Iraq to help train Iraqi forces in fighting ISIL.[668]
  • 13 June: The Syrian Kurdish YPG militia announced it had begun to move towards the ISIL-controlled border town of Tell Abyad after encircling the town of Suluk 20 km to the southeast.[669]
  • 15 June: A spokesman for Kurdish YPG units announced Syrian Kurdish fighters had taken the town of Tell Abyad from ISIL.[670]
  • 23 June: A Kurdish YPG spokesman announced the town of Ayn Issa and surrounding villages, located 50 km (30 miles) from Raqqa, were under the militia's "total control".[671] Abu Mohammad al-Adnani announced the expansion of ISIL to Russia's North Caucasus region as a new Wilayat.[672]
  • 24 June: ISIL attacks Kobanî, killing at least 146 people.[673] Kurdish forces and the Syrian government claimed the vehicles had entered the city from across the border, an action denied by Turkey.[674]
  • 26 June: ISIL claims responsibility for the bombing of a Shiite mosque in Kuwait City, killing at least 27 people,[675] and the attacks on tourists in Sousse, Tunisia, where 38 people were killed.[676]
  • 27 June: ISIL demolished the ancient statue Lion of al-Lat in Palmyra.[677]
  • 30 June: Alaa Saadeh, a 23-year-old resident of West New York, New Jersey, is arrested at his home on charges of conspiring to provide material support to ISIL, and aiding and abetting an attempt to do so. His brother, designated by the United States Department of Justice as Co-Conspirator 1 (CC-1), left the United States on 5 May to join ISIL. Other co-conspirators residing in Fort Lee, New Jersey and Queens, New York were arrested on 13 June and 17 June on similar charges, as part of an investigation of a group of individuals from New York and New Jersey that the Department says conspired to provide material support to ISIL.[678][679]

July 2015Edit

  • 2 July: Rockets were shot at southern Israel by an ISIS-affiliated group.[680]
  • 3 July: ISIL released a video showing the execution of 25 Syrian regime soldiers on the Palmyra amphitheatre stage.[681]
  • 10 July: Hafiz Saeed Khan, the Emir of ISIL's Khorasan Province, was killed in a drone strike in Afghanistan.[682]
  • 11 July: ISIL claims responsibility for a car bomb blast at the Italian consulate in Cairo, Egypt.[683]
  • 20 July: A bomb exploded on the Suruç district of Şanlıurfa, Turkey, killing 32 people and injuring 104. A politician from the pro-Kurdish party of DBP stated that the suicide bomber was a member of ISIS.[686]
  • 20 July: 13 ISIL fighters were killed by SAAF airstrikes in the city of Al-Hasakah.[687]

August 2015Edit

  • 2 August: 8 ISIL fighters in the North Caucasus region were killed by Russian Security forces.[688]
  • 5 August: US launches its first attacks against ISIL from Turkey.[689]
  • 5 August: ISIL captured the town Al-Qaryatayn in central Syria.[690]
  • 12 August: US launches its first manned air strikes against ISIL from Turkey.[691]
  • 13 August: ISIL truck-bombing of a market in a Shia district of Baghdad kills scores, wounds hundreds.[692]


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