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FIELD LISTING :: TERRORIST GROUPS - HOME BASED Print
CountryTERRORIST GROUPS - HOME BASED
Afghanistan Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant-Khorasan (ISIL-K):
aim(s): overthrow the Afghanistan Government and, ultimately, establish an Islamic caliphate in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region
area(s) of operation: ISIL-K's last three leaders were killed within 12 months: ABU SAYED in Kunar Province on 11 July 2017, Abdul HASIB Logari in Nangarhar Province on 27 April 2017, and Hafiz Saeed KHAN Orakzai on 26 July 2016 in the Achin District of eastern Nangarhar Province; headquartered in Kunar Province near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border; operatives have launched attacks against Shia Muslims, Taliban members, and Afghan National Security and Defense Forces primarily in neighboring Nangarhar Province and Kabul since the summer of 2015; recruits, trains, and equips fighters mainly in Nangarhar Province, who are deployed to fight throughout the country; responsible for the deadliest attack in Kabul in over 10 years, when a suicide bomber targeted a Shia Muslim ethnic Hazara demonstration on 23 July 2016 in Kabul, killing more than 80 demonstrators and injuring 260; assessed in mid-2017 to have 1,000 fighters, with most of them operating in Afghanistan; recruits heavily in prisons; operates a radio station; core ISIL refers to Afghanistan and Pakistan as its Wilayat al-Khorasan
Lashkar i Jhangvi (LJ):
aim(s): enhance its networks and paramilitary training in Afghanistan
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the east; operates paramilitary training camps near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border across from the central area of Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) region; Pakistani recruits travel to Afghanistan from Pakistan's central FATA borders to attend LJ's paramilitary training; beyond staging attacks to conduct inside Pakistan, operatives conduct limited operations inside Afghanistan
Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP):
aim(s): drive foreign troops from Afghanistan; remove Pakistani forces from Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and, ultimately, overthrow the Pakistan Government to install TTP's strict interpretation of Sharia throughout the country
area(s) of operation: headquartered in several eastern Afghanistan provinces near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border; operates primarily along the northeastern Afghanistan-Pakistan border, especially in Kunar Province where TTP has established sanctuaries; seeks regions out of the country's government's control; trains and deploys fighters in the tribal belt in the Pashtun areas; commanders based in Afghanistan continue to orchestrate attacks inside Pakistan; launches attacks inside Afghanistan against foreign troops and US personnel and interests; on 30 December 2009, a TTP suicide bomber described as a double agent for the US Government detonated explosives inside the US's Camp Chapman in eastern Khost Province, killing seven US Government personnel and injuring six other people
Algeria al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM):
aim(s): replace the Algerian Government with Sharia and, ultimately, create a regional Islamic caliphate across all of North and West Africa
area(s) of operation: a core al-Qa'ida affiliate headquartered in Algeria; most active in the southwestern, southeastern, and upper northern regions; engages heavily in kidnappings for ransom—its primary income source
Bangladesh Harakat ul-Jihad-i-Islami/Bangladesh (HUJI-B):
aim(s): install an Islamic state in Bangladesh
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Bangladesh and mostly active in the southeast; conducts occasional low-level bombing attacks against Bangladeshi officials and Westerners, especially US citizens; operations have waned in recent years due to aggressive counterterrorism measures; continues to train fighters and maintain a network of madrassas in Bangladesh; on 21 August 2004, operatives lobbed handgrenades at Sheikh HASINA during an anti-terrorism rally in Dhaka, where approximately 20,000 protesters attended a rally that HASINA's party, the Awami League, had organized; HASINA survived, but 24 Awami League leaders and workers were killed and over 300 people were injured; this was the HUJI-B's most lethal attack since its inception in 1992
Colombia National Liberation Army (Ejercito de Liberacion Nacional, ELN):
aim(s): represent the rural poor against the nation's wealthy and block the privatization of national resources
area(s) of operation: the nation's second-largest insurgent group operates mainly in the rural and mountainous areas in the northeast, especially Arauca Province, and is active in the northern and southwestern regions and along the borders with Venezuela and Ecuador; after lengthy behind-the-scenes discussions, peace talks with the Colombian Government officially began on 7 February 2017 in Quito, Ecuador, with Colombia releasing imprisoned members to serve as peace negotiators and ELN releasing former congressman Odin Sanchez, who ELN has held since April 2016; as of June 2017, negotiators on both sides remained committed to moving toward a bilateral ceasefire, on the condition that ELN cease and desist engaging in kidnappings, extortion, and other illegal practices; claimed responsibility for the 19 February 2017 bombing near the Santamaria Bullring in Bogota that killed one police officer and injured 26 police officers and at least four civilians; on 25 January 2017, an international narcotics investigation in Colombia led to the seizure of just under 4 metric tons of cocaine, the largest drug seizure ever involving the ELN; the group has a long history of engaging in narcotics production and trafficking, extortion, and kidnappings for ransom to fund operations; has increased its revenue from the narcotics trade in 2017; Colombian forces continue to pursue leaders and members, especially those who oppose peace talks and are conducting lethal attacks on military and security personnel or civilians; historically, group leaders directed attacks against primarily Colombian political, military, security, and economic figures and targeted foreign citizens for kidnappings for ransom; assessed in 2017 to have 1,500-2,500 members
Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia, FARC):
aim(s): enter the political arena to change Colombia's economic model, nationalize industries like oil and mining, and renegotiate free trade deals; historically, FARC's aim has been to install a Marxist-Leninist regime in Colombia through a violent revolution
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Uribe, Narino Department, in the southwest on the border with Ecuador and the Pacific Ocean shores; recognized as the nation's largest insurgent group, with less than 10,000 members in recent years; active mostly in Colombia's center, northeast, and mountainous southwest; historically, operatives have targeted Colombian political, military, and economic figures and structures for attack and foreign citizens for kidnappings for ransom; on 29 August 2016, a bilateral ceasefire went into effect between FARC leaders and the Colombian Government, followed by peace talks between FARC leader Rodrigo LONDONO and Colombia's President Juan Manuel SANTOS; on 30 November 2016, the Colombian Congress approved a peace accord between the FARC and Colombian Government; both sides remain committed to peace; FARC has commenced disarming in UN-monitored zones, with an estimated 7,000 members turning in their weapons by mid-March 2017 and preparing to reintegrate into civilian life; in exchange for disarmament, the government will allow FARC to form an official political party and integrate fighters into society through measures such as funding education and providing housing and jobs; FARC is striving to be ready to participate in 2018 elections as a political party; an estimated 300 FARC members remain resistant to demobilization, including the Armando Rios First Front's estimated 200 fighters; the five-decade conflict resulted in tens of thousands missing persons, massive land seizures, an estimated 5.7 million people displaced from their homes—primarily peasants, and at least 220,000 Colombian lives lost, including thousands of soldiers and police personnel; FARC leaders have vowed to cease participating in the narcotics trade, which has been the group's principal source of revenue for the past several years; an increasing number of members have defected recently to use their heavy-weapons skills to serve South American drug traffickers
Egypt Gama'a al-Islamiyya (Islamic Group) (IG):
aim(s): replace the Egyptian Government with an Islamist state
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Egypt and has largely honored the 1999 ceasefire agreement with the Egyptian Government by moving away from violence to meet its goal in favor of political and other non-violent means; on 20 June 2011, IG announced its political wing, Al-Banna' wa Al-Tanmiyya (The Construction and Development Party); Doha, Qatar-based Dr. Tariq al-ZUMUR, a fugitive in Egypt has chaired the party since he was elected in 2013 was reelected in May 2017; IG's political party secured 13 seats in Egypt's 2011 parliamentary elections; however, it did not win any seats in the 2015 parliamentary elections; during IG's violent era, on 17 November 1997, six gunmen fired on a group of foreign tourists visiting a temple in Luxor in southern Egypt, killing 65 tourists, who were mostly Swiss and Japanese, a local guide, and two policemen; the ambush coincided with a trial in Cairo accusing 65 alleged members of conspiracy to murder and resulted in the citizenry rallying in strong support behind the Egyptian Government's counterterrorism efforts; remains one of the deadliest terrorist attacks on Egyptian soil; IG remains outlawed in Egypt; founder and spiritual leader Shaykh Dr. Omar Abd al-RAHMAN (a.k.a. the blind Sheikh) was serving a life sentence in a US prison for his involvement in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and other attacks, until his death on 18 February 2017
ISIL Sinai Province (formerly Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis):
aim(s): establish an Islamic emirate in the Sinai
area(s) of operation: Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis joined ISIL in 2014; headquartered in the northeastern Sinai Peninsula under Abu Hajir al-HASHIMI; operational throughout Egypt, primarily in North Sinai, where operatives have killed hundreds of Egyptian policemen and soldiers; conducts attacks in Cairo, where operatives killed 28 people in a church in December 2016; continues to launch rockets from Egypt into southern Israeli's Eshkol region and to approach city of Eilat; on several occasions has sabotaged a Sinai pipeline that exports gas to Israel; core ISIL refers to Egypt as its Wilayat Sinai
Gaza Strip Army of Islam (AOI):
aim(s): stage attacks against Israel and Egypt from the Gaza Strip and, ultimately, establish an Islamic emirate in the region
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Gaza; heaviest presence and operational activity is in the Gaza Strip, from where operatives have a history of launching low-impact rockets into Israeli and Egyptian territory; kidnapped and subsequently released an American and New Zealander in Gaza working as Fox News journalists in 2006 and kidnapped and subsequently released a British journalist in 2007; rocket attacks have ebbed in recent years; most of the group's kidnappings are either for ransom or to negotiate with HAMAS to release AOI members from incarceration; membership was estimated in 2017 to number in the low hundreds; note—the Army of Islam (Jaish al-Islam, JAI) in Syria under Zahran ALLOUSH is unrelated to AOI
HAMAS:
aim(s): bolster its staging capabilities in the Gaza Strip against Israel with the intent to lift Israel's blockade surrounding the Gaza Strip and, ultimately, destroy the state of Israel
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Gaza, where in 2006 HAMAS won the Palestinian legislative Council election in the Gaza Strip and took control of the ruling Palestinian Authority Government; Yahya al-SINWAR was elected in February 2017 in an internal election to head the Gaza Political Bureau; al-SINWAR leads with his deputy, Khalil al-HAYYA; HAMAS has an official political bureau in Qatar; launches rockets frequently into Israel from the Gaza Strip, which has resulted in numerous long-running lethal conflicts between HAMAS and Israeli forces; has dug numerous underground tunnels leading into Israel; uses its primary media outlet, Al-Aqsa TV, to indoctrinate children in the Gaza Strip to become armed fighters and suicide bombers upon reaching adulthood
Mujahidin Shura Council in the Environs of Jerusalem (MSC):
aim(s): bolster its staging capabilities in the Gaza Strip against Israel and, ultimately, destroy the state of Israel
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Gaza; although present in Egypt, Libya, Syria, and Israel, MSC was assessed in 2017 to be largely defunct; had previously conducted numerous rocket attacks on Israeli territory; majority of veteran members have defected to join other armed groups
Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ):
aim(s): enhance its staging capabilities in the Gaza Strip to launch attacks inside Israel to destroy it; create an Islamic state in all of historic Palestine, as defined by the British Mandate, which includes the Gaza Strip
area(s) of operation: stages rocket attacks against civilians and military personnel primarily in southern Israel; Akram AJURI is the supreme commander over the al-Quds Brigades, PIJ's armed wing; assessed in 2017 to have less than 5,000 members based in the Gaza Strip
Palestine Liberation Front (PLF):
aim(s): bolster its staging capabilities in the Gaza Strip against Israel and, ultimately, destroy the state of Israel in order to establish a secular, Marxist Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital
area(s) of operation: based in Gaza; maintains a recruitment and limited paramilitary training presence in most of the refugee camps across the Gaza Strip; assessed in 2015 to have fewer than 500 members
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP):
aim(s): destroy the state of Israel and, ultimately, establish a secular, Marxist Palestinian state
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Gaza, recruiting and training fighters; stages limited attacks against Israel
PFLP-General Command (PFLP-GC):
aim(s): bolster its staging capabilities to prepare fighters for deployment to Syria and to launch occasional attacks inside Israel; ultimately, seeks to establish a Palestinian state
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Gaza; as a longtime supporter of the Syrian Government, the group trains and deploys fighters to Syria to fight on behalf of President Bashar al-ASAD; provides training for pay to other armed groups, including HAMAS; stages occasional small-scale attacks inside Israel
Greece Revolutionary Struggle (RS):
goals: disrupt the influence of globalization and international capitalism on Greek society, which RS blames for perceived unequal wealth distribution in Greece and, ultimately, overthrow the Greek Government
area(s) of operation: operates exclusively inside Greece, primarily in Athens; largely inactive in recent years, with the exception of shootouts with police officers trying to arrest members; RS claimed responsibility for a car bombing in central Athens on 10 April 2014 that resulted in no injuries but did cause substantial structural damage; has a history of conducting bombing and direct-fire attacks against Greek Government officials and buildings and officials' residences, multinational firms, domestic and foreign financial institutes, and embassies and diplomats; overall leader Panagiota ROUPA (a.k.a. Pola) was taken into Greek custody on 5 January 2017
India Indian Mujahedeen (IM):
aim(s): establish Islamic rule in India and, ultimately, convert all non-Muslims to Islam; stated goal is to carry out terrorist actions against Indians for perceived atrocities against Indian Muslims
area(s) of operation: based in the western state of Maharashtra, India's third-largest state and its second most populous state; in recent years, IM's small and loosely connected networks have diminished throughout the country; known for carrying out numerous coordinated bombings in crowded areas against economic and civilian targets in order to maximize casualties, resulting in hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries; on 13 July 2011, three coordinated bombings in Mumbai, India, resulted in 26 civilian deaths and at least 130 more injured; on 13 February 2010, operatives bombed a German bakery in Pune, Maharashtra State, killing 17 civilians; outlawed in India
Indonesia Jemaah Anshorut Tauhid (JAT):
aim(s): establish an Islamic caliphate in Indonesia
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Indonesia; a group member in Jamaah Ansharut Daulah, an Indonesian-based coalition of armed groups aligned with ISIL; has conducted multiple small-scale bombing and shooting attacks over the years on Indonesian Government personnel, police, military, and civilians, resulting in the deaths of several Indonesian police and civilians
Jemaah Islamiya (JI):
aim(s): overthrow the Indonesian Government and, ultimately, establish a pan-Islamic state across Southeast Asia
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Indonesia; on 5 August 2003, a suicide bomber detonated a VBIED outside the J.W. Marriott Hotel in Megakuningan, Jakarta, Indonesia, killing 12 people and injuring 150; on 12 October 2002, a suicide bomber detonated explosives in a busy nightclub frequented by foreigners on the resort island of Bali, followed by operatives detonating a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device when patrons fled the burning scene, killing at least 202 people; as of early 2017, the attack remains the deadliest in Indonesia; JI attacks have ebbed in recent years; incarcerated recruiters radicalize and recruit fellow prisoners
Iraq Ansar al-Islam (AAI):
aim(s): expel western interests from Iraq and establish an independent Iraqi state based on its interpretation of Sharia
area(s) of operation: headquartered in northern Iraq with its heaviest presence in Kirkuk, Tikrit, and Mosul; active in the western and central regions of the country; primarily targets Iraqi government, security, and police personnel for attacks and Iraqi citizens and politicians for kidnappings, executions, and assassinations; operates a paramilitary training camp in Ninawa Province, in the northwest along the border with western Syria; on 1 February 2004, two suicide bombers carried out simultaneous attacks at the headquarters of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) regional offices in Erbil, where party leaders greeted hundreds of people gathered to attend the KDP and PUK reception to celebrate the beginning of Eid; at least 101 people were killed and over 130 others were injured, including scores of senior KDP and PUK officials; in another high-profile attack, on 21 December 2004, a suicide bomber killed 14 US soldiers, four contractors, and injured 70 more soldiers and civilians when he detonated his vest in Forward Operating Base Marez's mess hall in Mosul; majority of members are Iraqi Kurds or Iraqi Arabs who are Sunni Muslim
Jaysh Rijal al-Tariq al Naqshabandi (JRTN):
aim(s): end external influence in Iraq and, ultimately, overthrow the government of Iraq to install a secular Ba'athist state within the internationally recognized borders of Iraq
area(s) of operation: continues to attack Kurds who belong to any of the separatist Kurdish groups, Iraqi Government military and security forces and facilities, and foreign military personnel; joined ISIL paramilitary forces in opposition to the Iraqi Government and played a major role in ISIL capturing Mosul from Iraqi security forces in 2014; JRTN and ISIL's relationship collapsed soon after ISIL took control of Mosul, denying JRTN a share in the take over; assessed in 2016 to have fewer than 5,000 members; majority of fighters are Iraqi Sunni Muslims following Naqshabandi Sufi Islam ideals
Kata'ib Hizballah (KH):
aim(s): counter US influence and, ultimately, overthrow the Iraqi Government to install a government based on Shia Muslim laws and precepts
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the Shia Muslim areas of Baghdad, with fighters increasingly active in Ninawa, Al Anbar, and Babil governorates in response to ISIL's territorial gains; targets mostly ISIL members, Sunni Muslims, and US personnel and interests; when fighting alongside the Iraqi army during the month-long offensive in May-June 2016 to retake the Shia Muslim-dominated city of Fallujah from ISIL, KH was among the Shia Muslim militias accused of beating and executing dozens of Sunni civilians in the recaptured city; until US military forces left the country in December 2011, KH earned a reputation for conducting numerous lethal IED and improvised rocket-assisted mortar (IRAM) attacks against US and coalition forces; an IRAM attack that killed a US civilian on 19 February 2008 at a US military base southeast of Baghdad was the group's first-known attack against anyone; the Iraqi Hizballah group that the late Secretary General Bassem al-MOUSAWI led is frequently confused with KH—the two groups are not affiliated; al-MOUSAWI was killed in early February 2017 in Basra Governorate
Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) (Kongra-Gel):
aim(s): establish Kurdistan, comprising territory in northern Iraq, eastern and southeastern Turkey, northern Syria, and northwestern Iran
area(s) of operation: headquartered in northern Iraq in the Qandil Mountains, where it has strongholds in As Sulaymaniyah and Arbil governorates and on the Iraq-Iran border; stages attacks inside Turkey from Iraq, which has drawn Turkish forces on occasion into Iraq to combat Kurdistan Workers Party fighters; enjoys escalating influence in Iraq in recent years as leaders deepen ties to Iraqi political leaders and religious parties throughout the country, especially in the areas of Sinjar and Rabi'ah in Nineveh Governorate, northwestern Kirkuk, and Tuz Khurmatu District in Salah ad Din Governorate; engages heavily in recruiting Iraqi Kurdish youths
Israel Kahane Chai (Kach):
aim(s): expel Arabs from Israel's biblical lands and, ultimately, restore the biblical state of Israel
area(s) of operation: Israel and West Bank settlements, where operatives have conducted bombings and shootings against Israeli Arabs and Palestinians; considered to be operationally inactive in recent years
Japan Aum Shinrikyo (AUM):
aim(s): attract new members seeking religious outlets and a willingness to commit an increasing amount of their assets to AUM; historically, leaders were centered on taking control of the Japanese Government by means of a military coup and sparking a nuclear war between Japan and the US to create a global Armageddon, with the end goal of "cleansing" the world so its members could achieve salvation
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the north in Hokkaido, where AUM opened the largest of its 33 buildings in July 2016; authorities inspect facilities and closely monitor both members and facilities under a law governing groups that have committed mass murder; has maintained a relatively non-violent presence since killing 13 people and injuring at least 6,300 on 20 March 1995, when operatives left leaking plastic bags containing liquid nerve agent Sarin (GB) inside subway trains in Tokyo for the stated purpose of creating fear and panic; at least 189 Aum members have been put on trial in Japan for their involvement in the 1995 attack, with nine receiving the death penalty; the attack's mastermind was the group's founder and current official leader, Chizuo MATSUMOTO (a.k.a. Asahara Shoko), who remains on death row; on 12 December 1994, operatives in Osaka, Japan, used nerve agent VX to poison businessman Tadahito HAMAGUCHI, a former member and suspected police informant; HAMAGUCHI died 10 days later; his autopsy was the first in the world to uncover traces of nerve agent VX; membership in Japan is estimated to be in the low hundreds; the majority of members reside in Russia
Lebanon Abdallah Azzam Brigades (AAB):
aim(s): enhance its networks in Lebanon to combat Shia Muslim influence in the country, including Hizballah; seeks to disrupt Israel's economy and its efforts to establish security and attack Western interests in the Middle East
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the Ayn al-Hilwah Palestinian refugee camp near Sidon in the south; responsible for several blasts and suicide attacks in Beirut's Shia Muslim-populated suburbs, such as Dahiyeh, that frequently kill or injure dozens of innocent civilians; responsible for numerous rocket attacks fired from Lebanon into populated Israeli territory; assessed in 2017 to have dozens of members
Asbat al-Ansar (AAA):
aim(s): overthrow the Lebanese Government, rid Lebanon of Western influences, and destroy the state of Israel to seize Jerusalem and, ultimately, establish an Islamic state in the Levant region
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the Ayn al-Hilwah Palestinian refugee camp near Sidon in the south; this group is essentially defunct; active primarily as recruiters in Lebanon's Palestinian refugee camps; until the mid-2000s, operatives conducted small-scale bombing and shooting attacks in Lebanon against Christian, secular, and Shia Muslim figures and institutions, elements of foreign influence inside the country, and Lebanese Government officials (including the assassination of judges); assessed in 2017 to have a few dozen members
Hizballah:
aim(s): destroy the state of Israel, counter the West, provide paramilitary support to Syrian President Bashar al-ASAD's regime, and accrue military resources, and defend its position of strength in Lebanon
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Beruit, with considerable support from Iran; Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps has had a presence in Lebanon since the early 1980s and coordinates closely with Hizballah on military operations and training; remains the most capable terrorist group in the country, enjoying popular support among many Lebanese Shia and allied Christians; engages in terrorist activity against Israel, including an incident on 28 January 2015, when operatives attacked an Israeli military convoy near Lebanon's Shebaa Farms area, killing two Israeli soldiers and wounding several others; the attack was the most severe eruption of violence between Israel and Hizballah since their lethal 34-day conflict in 2006; continues to operate as an armed militia beyond the control of the state and as a powerful political actor in Lebanon; receives funds from Lebanese donors and the Lebanese diaspora
Libya Ansar al-Shari'a in Benghazi:
aim(s): install Sharia in Libya
area(s) of operation: engages in frequent assassinations of security officials and political figures in the east, mostly in Benghazi; operates as a member of the Benghazi Revolutionaries Shura Council, a coalition of jihadist groups combating the Libyan Ground Forces; on 11 September 2012, members participated in launching mortar attacks and ransackings at the US Special Mission and Annex in Benghazi that killed four people, including US Ambassador Christopher STEVENS; majority of members are Libyans and some are former Libyan Islamic Fighting Group members
Ansar al-Shari'a in Darnah:
aim(s): install Sharia in Libya
area(s) of operation: engages in frequent assassinations of security officials and political figures in the east, mostly in Darnah; operates as a member group of the Darnah Mujahidin Shura Council, a coalition of jihadist groups combating the Libyan Ground Forces; on 11 September 2012, members participated in launching mortar attacks and ransackings at the US Special Mission and Annex in Benghazi that killed four people, including US Ambassador Christopher STEVENS; majority of members are Libyans and some are former Libyan Islamic Fighting Group members
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant's Branch in Libya (ISIL-Libya):
aim(s): prevent a unitary Libyan state from reconstituting, secure control over the country's critical resources and, ultimately, establish an Islamic caliphate in Libya
area(s) of operation: based in Libya since circa 2015, with its original headquarters in Sirte; organized in the following Libya-based wilayats (provinces): Wilayat Tarabulus (west), Wilayat Barqa (northeast), and Wilayat Fezzan (southeast); ISIL-Libya no longer controls territory in Libya, but does maintain a low-profile presence throughout much of the country; was previously known before 2017 to have operated paramilitary training camps, collected taxes, directed religious education, broadcasted its messages on radio, and enforced its strict interpretation of Sharia; prior to Libyan military and security forces and their foreign allies confronting ISIL-Libya, the group was assessed in 2016 to have had a growing presence with 1,000 of the 4,000-6,000 fighters based in Surt, a key oil exporting center, dedicated to taking control of oil fields to generate revenue; Libyan Government officials and Western allies collaborated to keep chemical weapons left over from the al-QADHAFI regime out of the group's reach; has engaged heavily in recruiting Libyan youth, including some from Colonel Muammar al-QADHAFI's tribe, and among his former army officers; current personnel strength is unknown
Mali al-Mulathamun Battalion:
aim(s): replace regional governments, including in Mali, with an Islamic state
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the north; targets primarily international interests, especially Westerners and Western entities; responsible for multiple lethal attacks across the country in 2016, including kidnappings in Tombouctou and along the border with Burkina Faso; affiliated with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL); elements based in Mali are part of Jama'at Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (Group for the Support of Islam and Muslims, JNIM), an alliance umbrella of al-Qa'ida linked groups in Mali that announced its presence on 2 March 2017; JNIM is responsible for several attacks carried out in central Mali
Ansar al-Dine (AAD):
aim(s): install Sharia throughout Mali; the Macina Liberation Front branch seeks to rebuild historic Islamic empires, primarily the Macina Empire
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the north, with its Macina Liberation Front branch based in Mopti in Central Mali increasing its operations in the south; launches attacks against Malian military and security forces, French troops, UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), and other Westerners; AAD is a member group in Jama'at Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (Group for the support of Islam and Muslims, JNIM), an alliance umbrella of al-Qa'ida linked groups in Mali that announced its presence on 2 March 2017; AAD's overall leader and founder Iyad Ag GHALI leads JNIM, which is responsible for several attacks carried out in central Mali
Nigeria Ansaru:
aim(s): establish an Islamic state in Nigeria
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the north; formed in 2012 as a breakaway faction of Boko Haram; has a history of attacking Nigerian Government officials and facilities and kidnapping and killing Westerners; activities have waned in recent years, especially since founder Khalid al-BARNAWI was arrested in Lokoja, Kogi State, in central Nigeria in April 2016; authorities arrested several commanders and fighters in Kogi State in mid-2016; kidnappings for ransom remain the group's primary revenue source; membership was assessed in 2017 to be much smaller than Boko Haram's estimated manpower strength of the low thousands
Boko Haram:
aim(s): replace the Nigerian Government with an Islamic state under strict Sharia and, ultimately, establish an Islamic caliphate across Africa; avenge military offenses against the group and destroy any political or social activity associated with Western society, including voting, attending secular schools, and wearing shirts and trousers
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the northeast, where the group was founded under the late Muslim cleric Mohammed YUSUF; since 2011, fighters have killed over 26,000 Nigerians during hundreds of attacks and disrupted trade and farming in the northeast, causing a calamitous famine and internally displacing an estimated 2.6 million people; continues to carry out suicide bombings in heavily populated areas, especially in the north and northeast, and to deepen food insecurity; remains the country's largest jihadist group; Nigeria continues to participate in the Joint Multinational Force's military offensives combating Boko Haram; one of the group's deadliest attacks began on 3 January 2015, when fighters used petrol bombs and other explosives and burned buildings in a series of mass killings in the northeast in Borno State in Baga and several surrounding villages that ended on 7 January 2015, with approximately 2,000 deaths and thousands of displaced civilians; lost its total control over the northeast in 2015, when the Nigerian military routed out cells from many of the group's longtime strongholds; conducted the largest recorded single kidnapping incident of women and children in Nigeria's history, when operatives abducted approximately 276 teenage female students in Chibok, Borno State, in April 2014; manpower strength was estimated in 2017 to be in the low thousands
Pakistan al-Qa'ida (AQ):
aim(s): establish a pan-Islamic caliphate under a strict Salafi Muslim interpretation of Sharia through ridding the Muslim world of Western influence, expelling non-Muslims from the Arabian Peninsula, overthrowing Muslim governments it deems to be apostate, and attacking "far enemy" (Western) interests and homelands with the intent to destablize Western governments
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Pakistan, with its heaviest presence in the northwest and in northeastern Afghanistan near the Pakistan-Afghanistan border; maintains safehavens in North Waziristan Agency in Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) region, a semi-autonomous region in the northwest consisting of seven tribal agencies (districts) and six frontier regions directly governed by Pakistan's federal government through a special set of laws called the Frontier Crimes Regulations; confronted with counterterrorism operations throughout the country; operates a blend of limited and well-established networks in Pakistan and across the globe, especially its affiliate al-Qa'ida organizations in the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia
al-Qa'ida in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS):
aim(s): establish an Islamic caliphate in the Indian subcontinent
area(s) of operation: maintains a steady presence, where overall leader Asim UMAR is based; Pakistan is known to have been AQIS's original headquarters; operates safe havens in North Waziristan Agency and South Waziristan Agency in the country's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) region; FATA is a semi-autonomous region in the northwest consisting of seven tribal agencies (districts) and six frontier regions directly governed by Pakistan's federal government through a special set of laws called the Frontier Crimes Regulations; operational throughout the country, targeting military and security personnel and using machetes to attack university professors, bloggers, and others who oppose AQIS's ideology; responsible for numerous attacks in Karachi; stages attacks in Afghanistan, India, and Bangladesh, where the group is the most active; majority of members are Pakistanis; outlawed in Pakistan
Haqqani Network (HQN):
aim(s): enhance its operational networks and capabilities for staging cross-border attacks in Afghanistan and, ultimately, replace the Afghan Government with a strict Salafi Muslim interpretation of Sharia
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) region in North Waziristan Agency (NWA); FATA is a semi-autonomous region in the northwest consisting of seven tribal agencies (districts) and six frontier regions directly governed by Pakistan's federal government through a special set of laws called the Frontier Crimes Regulations; NWA is located across from Afghanistan's southeastern border; fighters have staged numerous cross-border operations into Afghanistan, targeting Afghan, US, and NATO forces and other Afghan Government personnel and Westerners for attack or kidnappings for ransom
Harakat ul-Jihad-i-Islami (HUJI):
aim(s): overthrow the Pakistan Government and install Sharia throughout the country
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Pakistan, where the group operates several camps; remains heavily active in the southern area of Pakistan-controlled Azad Kashmir
Harakat ul-Mujahidin (HUM):
aim(s): annex Kashmi into Pakistan and establish an Islamic state in Kashmir
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Islamabad, with a heavy operational presence in Muzaffarabad in Pakistan-administered Azad Kashmir, where operatives stage attacks against India; maintains training and paramilitary camps in the country's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) region; FATA is a semi-autonomous region in the northwest consisting of seven tribal agencies (districts) and six frontier regions directly governed by Pakistan's federal government through a special set of laws called the Frontier Crimes Regulations; outlawed in Pakistan since November 2003
Islamic Jihad Union (IJU):
aim(s): secure its base in Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and, ultimately, overthrow the Government of Uzbekistan
area(s) of operation: headquartered in FATA, where fighters attack Pakistani security forces and stage attacks inside Afghanistan; FATA is a semi-autonomous region in the northwest consisting of seven tribal agencies (districts) and six frontier regions directly governed by Pakistan's federal government through a special set of laws called the Frontier Crimes Regulations; operates primarily against international and Afghan forces in Afghanistan, in collaboration with other armed groups; members are scattered throughout Central Asia and Europe; on 29 July 2004, an operative blew himself up next to a vehicle in Fateh Jhang, Attock District, Punjab Province, carrying Pakistan's then prime minister-designate, Shaukat AZIZ, killing at least nine people and injuring more than 25; membership was assessed in 2016 to be in the low hundreds
Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU):
aim(s): enhance its networks and secure its territory in Pakistan to meet its historic goal of establishing an Islamic state in the Fergana Valley, a fertile valley spread across eastern Uzbekistan, southern Kyrgyzstan, and northern Tajikistan
area(s) of operation: leadership is based in Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) region; FATA is a semi-autonomous region in country's northwest consisting of seven tribal agencies (districts) and six frontier regions directly governed by Pakistan's federal government through a special set of laws called the Frontier Crimes Regulations; IMU moved to Pakistan after the US-led invasion of Afghanistan in 2001; active along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border across from northern Afghanistan, where on the Pakistan side as of 2017, the group operates considerably fewer paramilitary training camps than during its peak in the late 1990s leading up to 2001
Jaish-e-Mohammed (JEM):
aim(s): unite Kashmir with Pakistan, install Sharia in Pakistan, and drive foreign forces from Afghanistan
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Punjab Province; stages attacks against Indian forces, primarily in the Indian-administered state of Jammu and Kashmir; hundreds of members are active in the Kashmir Valley; outlawed in Pakistan
Jundallah:
aim(s): seeks greater autonomy for Balochis in Pakistan and Iran
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Balochistan Province, where operatives stage attacks inside Iran against Shia Muslims, primarily Iranian soldiers and security personnel for murder or kidnapping; claimed responsibility for opening fire on a bus carrying Ismaili Shia Muslims on 13 May 2015 in Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park in Karachi, killing 43 passengers and wounding 30; outlawed in Pakistan since January 2017
Lashkar-e Tayyiba (LeT):
aim(s): annex India's state of Jammu and Kashmir as part of Pakistan and, ultimately, install Islamic rule over parts of India and Pakistan
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Lahore, Punjab Province, with an operational presence throughout the country, especially in both the Pakistan-controlled and India-controlled Kashmir regions; stages attacks against Indian military and security forces; the Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation charity organization in Lahore is a JuD and LeT fundraising subsidiary; LeT has been outlawed in Pakistan since 2002; LeT changed its name to Kashmir Tehrik Azadi in early 2017
Peru Shining Path (Sendero Luminoso, SL):
aim(s): generate revenue by providing security for narcotics trafficking and growing coca to produce cocaine; historically, SL's goal was to replace Peruvian institutions with a peasant revolutionary regime
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the Valley of the Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro River Valleys (VRAEM) region; responsible for bombing and shooting attacks that have claimed over 70,000 deaths since SL's inception in the late 1960s; currently engages heavily in all aspects of narcotics trafficking activities, especially in the VRAEM and Upper Huallaga Valley (UHV) regions
Philippines Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG):
aim(s): establish an Islamic State in the Philippines' Mindanao Island and, ultimately, an Islamic caliphate across Southeast Asia
area(s) of operation: headquartered in southern Philippines in Western Mindanao and active in Sulu, Basilan, and Tawi-Tawi provinces in the Sulu Archipalego; conducts bombings, shootings, beheadings, assassinations, and kidnappings; kills military and police personnel and bombs their facilities; as of mid-2017 supreme leader, Isnilon HAPILON, continued to lead ASG's and Maute Group's (a.k.a. Islamic State of Lanao) seige of Marawi that started on 23 May 2017, when government forces attempted to capture HAPILON in the Lanao de Sur Province's capital; the Maute Group is a fellow ISIL-affiliated organization; over 500 people had died in the conflict (89 security personnel and approximately 65 civilians and 353 militants) and over 471,224 others had been displaced by early July 2017; ASG engages heavily in kidnappings for ransom and kills hostages when ransoms are denied, such as beheading German hostage Jurgen KANTNER on 27 February 2017 and Canadian hostages Robert Hall on 13 June 2016 and John Ridsdel on 25 April 2016; reportedly, ASG was holding more than 20 foreign hostages as of February 2017; operatives bombed the 10,000-ton Superferry 14 on 27 February 2004 in the Philippines, killing 116 people; as of 2017, the ship's bombing remains the world's deadliest terrorist attack at sea; assessed in 2016 to have over 400 fighters, although several of them were reportedly killed in 2017 during clashes in Marawi
Communist Party of the Philippines/New People's Army (CPP/NPA):
aim(s): destablize the Philippines' economy to inspire the populace to revolt against the government and, ultimately, overthrow the Philippine Government to install a communist regime
area(s) of operation: this decades-long Maoist-inspired armed group operates throughout most of the country, primarily in rural regions, with its strongest presence in the Sierra Madre Mountains, rural Luzon, Visayas, and parts of northern and eastern Mindanao; maintains cells in Manila, Davao City, and other metropolitan areas; before entering into formal peace talks with the Philippine Government on 19 January 2017—with the National Democratic Front representing the group—leaders deployed operatives to launch lethal attacks against Philippine military and security forces, government officials, government facilities, infrastructure (including power facilities, telecommunication towers, and bridges), foreign enterprises, and businesses that refused to pay extortion or "revolutionary taxes"; at least 30,000 people in the Philippines have been killed in its attacks since its inception in March 1969; killed four US military personnel in the Philippines during the 1980s and continues to oppose US military and commercial presence; estimated in late 2015 to have 4,000 male and female members, down from its peak strength of approximately 26,000 in the 1980s; in recent years, the Philippine Government has referred to the group as CNN, short for the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF)
Somalia al-Shabaab:
aim(s): discredit and destablize the Federal Government of Somalia and target any countries' interests that supports Somalia's fight against al-Shabaab; establish Islamic rule in Somalia and Kenya's border regions
area(s) of operation: a core al-Qa'ida affiliate that maintains strongholds in rural areas in the south, where it controls a large swathe of the Lower and Middle Juba regions, and has increased its attacks in 2017 in the northeast in Puntland State; responsible for numerous high-profile bombings and shootings throughout Somalia targeting African Union Mission for Somalia (AMISOM) troops, Somali military and police personnel, and civilian-populated areas, especially where Westerners and other foreigners are present, such as shopping malls, hotels, and restaurants; AMISOM is a regional peacekeeping force operated by the African Union with the approval of the UN; fighters have increasingly targeted peacekeeping forces since early 2016; assassins have killed scores of civil society figures, government officials, international aid workers, members of NGOs, and journalists; assessed to have less than 10,000 combatants; The death toll from two truck bombs in Somalia’s capital soared to an estimated 280 on 14 October 2017 as the deadliest attack in the country’s decade-long war with Islamist extremists. Also, more than 300 people were reported wounded.
Spain Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA):
aim(s): establish an independent Basque homeland based on Marxist principles in what is now northern Spain and southwestern France
area(s) of operation: headquartered in northern Spain, where the Spanish and French Governments collaborate to arrest members and demand disarmament before engaging in negotiations; ETA has refrained from conducting attacks since its 20 October 2011 communique declaring a permanent cessation of violence, but had neither formally disbanded nor given up its weapons arsenal by early 2017; 279 members are currently in Spain's prisons, with an unknown number present in the country; on 14 January 2017, tens of thousands of supporters gathered in Bilbao in northern Spain at the annual ETA prisoner amnesty rally to demand at a minimum that members be released who have served their court-imposed sentences and for others to be transfered to jails close to their families; the group marked its 50th anniversary in 2009 with a series of high-profile and lethal car bombings, including the 29-30 July 2009 attacks on Civil Guard Barracks in Burgos and Calvia that killed two guards and injured more than 65 civilians; responsible for hundreds of deaths in Spain since its inception in 1959; outlawed in Spain
Sri Lanka Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE):
aim(s): revive the movement to establish a Tamil homeland
area(s) of operation: sustains efforts primarily in the east to revive the movement and, occasionally, to plot attacks; despite LTTE's military defeat at the hands of the Sri Lankan Government in 2009, LTTE remains capable of raising funds, mostly from the global Tamil diaspora; members remain operational, such as the LTTE operatives who were arrested in India in 2014 for plotting imminent attacks; authorities continue in 2017 to pursue leaders, operatives, and supporters for arrest; prior to its 2009 defeat, LTTE employed an integrated battlefield insurgent strategy targeting Sri Lanka's key installations and senior political and military leaders; since LTTE began its armed campaign in Sri Lanka in 1983, clashes between government forces and LTTE have resulted in an estimated 300,000 internally displaced persons, a million Tamils leaving the country, and 100,000 deaths, including an estimated 200 Tamil political leaders that LTTE has assassinated over the years
Syria al-Nusrah Front:
aim(s): overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-ASAD's regime, absorb like-minded Syrian rebel groups and, ultimately, establish a regional Islamic caliphate
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the northwestern Idlib Governorate, with a minor in Halab Governorate; operational primarily in northern, western, and southern Syria; al-Nusrah's subunit Jund al-Aqsa operates in Idlib and Hama governorates; installs Sharia in areas under its control; targets primarily Syrian regime and proregime forces, some minorities, occasionally other Syrian insurgent groups, and Western interests; openly collaborated with core al-Qa'ida veteran and senior figures until supreme leader Fateh al-JAWLANI announced publicly in mid-2016 that formal ties with al-Qa'ida had been cut and al-Nusrah would henceforth operate under the name Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (Front for the Conquest of the Levant); JAWLANI's disaffiliation claim remained unsubstantiated as of early 2017, according to the US Government; engages in effective online and in-person recruitment campaigns in Syria; majority of members are Syrian, with many al-Qa'ida veterans from other jihad theaters; assessed in mid-2016 to have at least 6,000 active fighters
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL):
aim(s): replace the Syrian Government with an Sunni Islamic state and implement ISIL's strict interpretation of Sharia
area(s) of operation: maintains extensive networks and an operational presence throughout the country, despite losing large swathes of territory since early 2016; ISIL had lost most of its control in its defacto capital, the city of Ar Raqqah, by mid-2017; continues to operate bases in the Ar Raqqah area and along the Syria-Iraq border; thousands of combatants target Syrian and Russian Government interests, religious and ethnic minorities, and all groups or governments that oppose ISIL's hardline Sunni jihadist ideology, including perceived Sunni rivals; exploits natural resources, especially oil and wheat, and levies taxes and fees on companies and individuals in areas under its control; responsible for millions of Syrians fleeing their homes, including the estimated 5 million who had left Syria by early 2017; fighters have ransacked and demolished numerous ancient sites that pre-date Islam, denouncing them as idolatrous; in May 2015, ISIL overran the ancient city of Palmyra, a UNESCO World Heritage site famed for its well-preserved Graeco-Roman ruins, and went on to destroy its best known structures; has used mustard and chlorine gas against civilian and military targets in Syria, where allies continue to work together to dismantle its chemical weapons production plants; dozens of key leaders have been killed since early 2016, putting ISIL's highly decentralized structure and spawling network of regional affiliates to the test; senior leader Gulmurod KHALIMOV, a former Tajik military officer serving as ISIL's chief recruiter, remains based in Syria; ISIL's chief cleric, Turki al-BINALI, was killed on 31 May 2017 during an airstrike in Al Mayadin, Dayr az Zawr Governorate, near the border with Iraq; al-BINALI's recorded lectures and other propaganda were central in recruiting foreign fighters
Tunisia Ansar al-Shari'a in Tunisia (AAS-T):
aim(s): expand its influence in Tunisia and, ultimately, replace the Tunisian Government with Sharia
area(s) of operations: headquartered in Tunisia, where members instigate riots and violent demonstrations, engage in attacks, and teach religious classes to locals; assassins and suicide bombers target Tunisian military and security personnel, Tunisian politicans, religious sites, and groups and places representing Western influence such as tourists and places they frequent; in February and July 2013, members were implicated in the assassination of Tunisian politicians Chokri BELAID and Mohamed BRAHMI; on 14 September 2012, members overran and ransacked the US Embassy and a nearby school in Tunis, causing millions of dollars in damage; manpower strength was unknown as of early 2017; majority of fighters are Tunisian; in recent years, some of the fighters have either left the country or defected to join other armed groups; outlawed in Tunisia
Turkey Revolutionary People's Liberation Party/Front (DHKP/C):
aim(s): install a Marxist-Leninist government in Turkey
area(s) of operation: headquartered in Turkey, where the group has assassinated numerous Turkish businessmen, security officers, judiciary personnel, and attacked US personnel and facilities in Turkey over the years; has revived its attacks, primarily in Istanbul, against Turkish Government elements in recent years; launched rocket attacks on police and government buildings in Istanbul as recently as 21 January 2017; known for employing youths sympathetic to the group's cause to participate in violent riots; participates in terrorist acts with other armed groups, such as in August 2015, when a female member and a female from another group shot at the US Consulate in Istanbul, resulting in no fatalities; DHKP/C's central leadership directs the group's affairs in Turkey and abroad; senior leaders' whereabouts are unknown; numerous senior leaders and operatives have been arrested in recent years; assessed to have several dozen members operating in Turkey; outlawed in Turkey
United Kingdom Continuity Irish Republican Army (CIRA):
aim(s): disrupt the Northern Ireland peace process, remove British rule in Northern Ireland and, ultimately, unify Ireland
area(s) of operation: based and operationally active primarily in Belfast and along the border areas of Northern Ireland, where operatives have carried out bombings, assassinations, kidnappings, hijackings, extortion, and robberies over the years; articulates its intent to target drug dealers and other criminals, especially those who harm any Republican, including RIRA members; remains sporadically operational targeting primarily the British military, Northern Ireland security forces, and Loyalist paramilitary groups; attacks in recent years involve shootings and small-scale bombings; does not have an established presence on the UK mainland; accused in 1996 of directing operatives to park a vehicle with 1,500 pounds of homemade explosives at the Killyhelvin Hotel in Enniskillen, County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland; on 15 July 1996, at least 11 people were injured and most of the immensely popular and newly refurbished hotel was demolished; the attack occurred during the original IRA's first ceasefire; estimated in 2016 to have 50-100 members
Real Irish Republican Army (RIRA):
aim(s): committed to using violence to remove British rule in Northern Ireland, disupt the Northern Ireland peace process, and unify Ireland
area(s) of operation: based and operationally active in Northern Ireland, where operatives continue to conduct occasional shootings and small-scale bombings; RIRA claimed responsibility for the 2 April 2011 murder of the Police Services of Northern Ireland's Constable Ronan Kerr, who was killed when a booby-trap bomb exploded under his car in Omagh; RIRA conducted its deadliest attack in the UK on 15 August 1998, when operatives detonated a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device with 500 pounds of explosives on a busy street in Omagh, killing 29 people and injuring at least 220; maintains a limited presence in Great Britain; estimated in 2015 to have a 100 active members
West Bank Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (AAMB):
aim(s): drive the Israeli military and Jewish settlers from the West Bank, impel Israelis to leave Jerusalem and, ultimately, establish a Palestinian state comprising the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and Jerusalem
area(s) of operation: headquartered in the West Bank, where AAMB is operationally active targeting Israeli soldiers and Israeli civilians living in Jewish settlements in the West Bank; estimated in 2015 to have a few hundred members, who operate in small decentralized cells, with each cell reporting to a local leader
Yemen al-Qa'ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP):
aim(s): overthrow the Yemen Government and, ultimately, establish a regional Islamic caliphate; eradicate Western influence and presence from Yemen and the rest of the Arabian Peninsula
area(s) of operation: a core al-Qa'ida affiliate that was headquartered in Al Mukalla, Hadramawt Governorate, until Yemeni forces and their allies drove AQAP from the city in April 2016; most active in southern, eastern, and central Yemen, especially in Abyan, Al Baydah, Hadramawt, Sabwah, and Ma'rib governorates; conducts ongoing attacks against Yemeni Government forces, officials, and facilities and Western embassies, diplomats, tourists, and Shia Muslims, oil facilities, and merchant ships, as well as Western and Saudi Arabian interests; assessed in 2015 to have up to 4,000 members