Eye on Extremism, January 24, 2017

Reuters: U.S. Military Denies Coordinating Syria Air Strikes With Russia

“The Pentagon on Monday denied that it had coordinated air strikes with Russia in Syria, after Russia’s defense ministry said the United States had provided coordinates for Islamic State militants. The Russian defense ministry said the Russian military had received coordinates of Islamic State targets near al-Bab, Syria from the ‘American side’ of the U.S.-led coalition fighting the militant group on Jan. 22. ‘As a result of this joint operation, a number of ammunition depots… as well as an area where militants had gathered with equipment, were destroyed,’ the Russian defense ministry was quoted by TASS news agency as saying.”

Daily Mail: ISIS Leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi ‘Critically Injured In Air Strikes In Northern Iraq’

“ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has been ‘critically injured’ in air strikes in northern Iraq, it has been claimed. The terror mastermind is said to have been wounded after a bombing raid in Al-Ba’aj, it has been reported locally. However, it is not the first time claims have emerged that al-Baghdadi has been either hurt or killed and there has yet to be official confirmation. The Pentagon said in December it believed that the ISIS chief was alive, despite repeated efforts by the US-led coalition to take out the jihadist group leader. Baghdadi has kept a low profile, despite having declared himself the leader of a renewed Muslim caliphate, but last month released a defiant audio message urging his supporters to defend the northern Iraqi city of Mosul.”

Reuters: Iraqi Forces Claim Recapture Of Eastern Mosul After 100 Days Of Fighting

“Iraqi officials said on Monday government forces had taken complete control of eastern Mosul, 100 days after the start of their U.S.-backed campaign to dislodge Islamic State militants from the city. The deputy parliament speaker announced the capture of the east of the city, Islamic State’s last major stronghold in Iraq, after a meeting with Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi. ‘We completed the total liberation of the left bank of Mosul and this is a gift to the Iraqi people,’ said Sheikh Humam Hamoudi in a statement. The army on Sunday entered Rashidiya, the last district under the control of the militants on the east bank of the Tigris, said military spokesman Brigadier-General Yahya Rasool.”

Associated Press: Iraq Premier Orders Probe Into Violations By Troops In Mosul

“Iraq’s prime minister on Monday ordered an investigation into violations of human rights and other abuses purportedly committed by government troops and paramilitary forces battling the Islamic State group to retake the city of Mosul. Haider al-Abadi said the probe will examine ‘cases of kidnappings, mistreatment and violations’ against civilians. Al-Abadi blamed such incidents on ‘groups that exploit the good name’ of Iraqi soldiers and Shiite and Sunni paramilitaries.”

CNN: US Bombing In Libya Was Linked To Berlin Truck Attack

“Intelligence indicating the possible presence of terrorists linked to the Berlin truck attack contributed to the decision to strike Libyan camps 28 miles southwest of Sirte last week, a US official and a source close to Libyan intelligence told CNN. On December 19, 2016, the Tunisian extremist Anis Amri drove a truck into a Christmas market in the German capital, killing 12. Police shot him dead four days later near Milan, Italy. Soon after, ISIS released a selfie-video he prerecorded from a Berlin bridge claiming he was acting on its behalf. Investigative files obtained by CNN showed he was part of an ISIS recruitment network inside Germany.”

Times Of Israel: Brussels Airport Bombers Targeted Jews, Americans, Investigators Say

“The Islamic State suicide bombers who attacked Brussels airport last year targeted Jewish people and passengers travelling to the United States, several sources told AFP. The Belgian-led investigation believes a check-in counter for an American carrier was one of the targets in the March 22, 2016 attacks, the sources said on condition of anonymity. They also suspect that travellers to Israel may have been in the crosshairs, and that airport security camera footage shows one bomber apparently pursuing Hasidic Jews seconds before one of the blasts.”

Radio Free Europe: Islamic State Is Collapsing, So Why Is It Suddenly So Successful Against Assad?

“There are at least four separate coalitions that claim to be battling the extremist group Islamic State (IS). Three of those coalitions are reporting great success, and the failures of the fourth coalition tell us many things about the state of regional and geopolitical affairs. The physical ‘dawla,’ or ‘state,’ that was solidified by IS in 2014 at one point stretched from northwestern Syria to the outskirts of Baghdad in Iraq. Now it is attacked on all sides and is rapidly shrinking.”

The Times Of Israel: Top Hamas Leader In Gaza Visits Egypt In First Trip Since 2013

“The top Hamas official from the Gaza Strip has arrived in Egypt for meetings with security officials, the highest-level visit by a member of the Palestinian terrorist group since Egypt’s army overthrew an Islamist president in 2013. Ismail Haniyeh arrived late Sunday, Egyptian security officials said, as Hamas officials confirmed the visit. Hamas, an Islamic terrorist group with historic links to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, enjoyed warm relations with Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi, a top Brotherhood figure who was overthrown by the military in 2013 after a divisive year in power.”

Washington Free Beacon: Iran Caught Importing Missile Technology

“Ukrainian authorities have confirmed that they seized a shipment of missile system components bound for Iran, according to official statements that could put the Islamic Republic in violation of international bans on such behavior. The State Border Guard Service of Ukraine, or DPSU, announced late last week that it had seized at least 17 boxes filled with missile components bound for Iran, according to IHS Jane’s. “The DPSU said that, during an inspection of the aircraft on 19 January, its personnel had found 17 boxes with no accompanying documents, which the aircraft’s crew said contained an aircraft repair kit,” according to the report. “Three boxes contained components that were believed to be for a Fagot anti-tank guided missile system, the rest contained aircraft parts.”

BBC: Nigeria: Babies Used In Suicide Bombings, Officials Warn

“Female suicide bombers in Nigeria are now carrying babies to avoid detection in their attacks, authorities warn. An attack in the town of Madagali on 13 January saw two women detonate their devices, killing themselves, two babies, and four others. They had passed a vigilante checkpoint, mistaken for civilians because they were carrying infants. Female attackers have been seen before, but officials said the use of babies could signal a ‘dangerous’ trend. The insurgent group Boko Haram is widely suspected of having carried out the attack.”

ABC News: Man Accused Of Supporting Islamic State Group Gets 6 Years

“The Justice Department says a 34-year-old man who expressed a desire to attack the police or U.S. Military personnel out of allegiance to the Islamic State group has been sentenced to six years in prison. U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes said in a news release that Daniel Seth Franey, also known as Abu Dawuud, was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court in Tacoma for illegally possessing firearms. Hayes says Franey, of Montesano, was arrested in February 2016 following an undercover investigation during which he repeatedly violated a permanent protection order prohibiting him from possessing firearms.”

United States

Associated Press: Trump Calls Egypt’s El-Sissi, Offers Support

“Egypt’s presidency says that U.S. President Donald Trump spoke with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, who expressed hope for a ‘new push’ in bilateral relations under Trump’s administration. The statement said that the newly-inaugurated Trump called el-Sissi on Monday and ‘expressed his appreciation for the difficulties Egypt bears in its war against terrorism.’ Trump and el-Sissi have already shown a certain bond. Trump said there was ‘good chemistry’ when they met on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly in September.”

The Jerusalem Post: Trump Turns Noncommittal On Jerusalem Embassy Move

“Once committed to quickly moving America’s embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, the Trump administration is now expressing caution, promising only to review the matter extensively and in consultation with ‘stakeholders’ in the conflict. That deliberative process tracks closely with the policy evolutions of two prior presidents, Barack Obama and George W. Bush, who also campaigned on a pledge to move the embassy. Both ultimately reversed course while in their first terms office.”

CNN: Pompeo Confirmed As CIA Chief

“The Senate confirmed Mike Pompeo, President Donald Trump’s pick for CIA director, on Monday night. The vote was 66-32 in favor of confirmation, with Pompeo picking up some Democratic backing. The only Republican in opposition was Sen. Rand Paul. The vote was held open longer than normal in an effort to let Senators delayed by the storm in the Northeast reach Washington, but it was gaveled closed before Sens. Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal could arrive. Vice President Mike Pence swore in Pompeo, a Kansas congressman, after the vote at the White House.”

CNN: Senate Committee Approves Tillerson For Secretary Of State

“Former ExxonMobil chief executive Rex Tillerson won the backing of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Monday to be secretary of state when it voted 11-10 to send his nomination to the full Senate. Sen. Marco Rubio was a long hold-out and potential ‘no’ vote after he raised concerns about Tillerson’s views toward Russia and human rights. But the Florida Republican announced earlier Monday that he would support the nomination. If Rubio had voted no, it could have stalled Tillerson, although GOP leaders planned to move his nomination to the floor regardless.”

The Wall Street Journal: White House Expresses Willingness To Cooperate With Russia On Islamic State

“The White House said Monday that President Donald Trump is open to cooperating with Russia on combating the Islamic State extremist group, if Russia shares U.S. interests in doing so, but didn’t outline plans or a process for establishing joint military ventures or strikes. Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, opened the door to possible cooperation during a news conference. ‘I think if there’s a way that we can combat ISIS with any country, whether it’s Russia or anyone else, and we have a shared national interest in that, sure, we’ll take it,’ he said, using an acronym for Islamic State.”

Syria

The New York Times: First Day Of Syria Peace Talks Quickly Descends Into Quarreling

“The first face-to-face meeting between Syrian rebel fighters and government officials in nearly six years of civil war ended abruptly on Monday when diplomatic talks quickly devolved into harsh words and competing accusations. The new round of talks arranged by Russia and Turkey in Astana, the capital of Kazakhstan, was meant to showcase Moscow’s increasingly dominant role in the diplomacy and its new understanding with the Turkish government, a leading sponsor of the rebels.”

Reuters: Russian Bombers Hit Islamic State Near Besieged Syrian Army Enclave

“Russian jets pounded Islamic State in the eastern Syrian province of Deir al-Zor on Monday, seeking to thwart a full-blown assault by the militants against the last district in the region still held by the Damascus government. Six TU-22 strategic bombers carried out air strikes against Islamic State targets near the city of Deir al-Zor, Russia’s defense ministry said in a statement. The long-range bombers took off from Russian territory, it said, a rare occurrence as Russia usually launches bombing runs from its air base in the Syrian province of Latakia. Islamic State has launched its fiercest assault in a year to capture the government enclave, a pocket of Deir al-Zor city surrounded by IS territory, in a battle that has killed dozens.”

Iraq

Voice Of America: Mosul Neighborhoods In Chaos As Iraqi Forces Press On

“‘When Islamic State authorities were around, we wore it like this,’ says Dalia, a mother of two, demonstrating how to make her black face veil cover even her eyes, two days after Iraqi forces took back her neighborhood. ‘When they were not around, your eyes could show,’ she adds. ‘But the eyebrows had to stay covered.’ Dalia whips off the veil and offers it to me as a memento. With only one neighborhood in eastern Mosul still held by IS militants, she is confident she won’t need it again. A few kilometers away, out of range of the ongoing battle, families stream in and out of the warzone on foot. Civilian cars are banned in recently captured areas of Mosul because Iraqi forces don’t want to confuse families with car bombers.”

Turkey

Reuters: Fate Of Turkish Troops Who Fled To Greece To Be Decided This Week

“Greece’s Supreme Court will deliver its verdict on Thursday on whether or not to extradite eight Turkish soldiers who fled to Greece in a helicopter after a failed military coup in July, the Athens News Agency reported. Turkey alleges the men were involved in the July 15 coup attempt against President Tayyip Erdogan and has demanded their swift extradition. The men, who deny the accusations and have requested asylum in Greece, say their lives would be in danger at home where authorities are purging large numbers of people from the armed forces and other state institutions.”

Reuters: Turkey Dismisses Deputy Head Of TMSF State Fund In Post-Coup Decree

“Turkey has dismissed a deputy head of the state fund which runs seized companies and shut down two local television stations in decrees issued on Monday under the emergency rule imposed in the wake of last July’s failed coup. The Official Gazette said Zulfukar Sukru Kanberoglu of the TMSF fund was one of 367 people dismissed from state institutions under the latest four decrees, which also reinstated 124 civil servants. It said the people were dismissed for being members of, or having links to, terror groups or groups which act against national security. Broadcaster Haberturk said on Saturday prosecutors had issued arrest warrants for more than 400 people, including soldiers and security officers, in 48 provinces across the country following July’s failed coup.”

Voice Of America: Turkey’s Erdogan Urges Tanzania To End Gulen Ties

“Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday talked about trade and security on the first stop of an African tour, urging Tanzania’s leader to shut institutions linked to a Muslim cleric who is accused by Turkey of leading a failed coup. Erdogan met Tanzanian President John Magufuli in the city of Dar es Salaam, and he will return to Turkey on Wednesday after stops in Mozambique and Madagascar. The trip is part of Turkey’s effort to develop relationships on the African continent, evident in the opening of more embassies and Turkish Airlines routes over more than a decade.”

Afghanistan

Voice Of America: Afghan Authorities Accuse Iran Of Using Taliban To Undercut Water Projects

“Afghan governors in southern and western provinces charged on Monday that Iran is using an increasingly close relationship with the Afghan Taliban to target power and water projects on Tehran’s behalf. Hayatullah Hayat, the governor of southern Helmand province, told VOA’s Afghan service that the Islamic Republic wants the Taliban to disable some of the nation’s dams so that Tehran can get a larger share of water from the Helmand River. He cited classified Afghan intelligence reports forwarded to the Afghan palace and the National Security Council. ‘Iran is seeking to undermine the development projects over the Helmand River so that it can continue receiving more water,’ Hayat said.”

Deutsche Welle: Will Washington And Moscow Come Together On Afghanistan?

“Following the transition of power in Washington, Russian observers have identified new opportunities for Russian-American cooperation on Afghanistan. Initially, Russia gave the impression that it had a positive view of the US and NATO mission in Afghanistan. In the first few years, Washington and Moscow actively worked together. But the deterioration of bilateral relations towards the end of the 2000s led to Russia and the West drifting apart on the issue. For example, Washington criticized alleged secret negotiations that Russian diplomats held with representatives of the radical Islamic Taliban in Afghanistan. The Russian Foreign Ministry claims that no such negotiations have ever taken place.”

Radio Free Europe: Taliban Calls On Trump To Withdraw From Afghanistan ‘Quagmire’

“The Taliban has called on President Donald Trump to withdraw U.S. forces from Afghanistan, saying it is a ‘quagmire’ that has produced little but 15 years of destruction and death. Trump has never stated what his policy is on Afghanistan, though he has said he supports U.S. troops stationed there and he appointed two former generals with extensive experience in Afghanistan to top security positions. In an open letter to the new U.S. president published on a Taliban web page verified by the SITE Intelligence Group on January 23, the insurgent movement told Trump the United States has lost credibility after spending billions of dollars on a 15-year entanglement with no end in sight.”

The Wall Street Journal: Afghanistan Orders Arrest Of Vice President’s Guards

“Afghanistan’s attorney general ordered the arrest of nine of Vice President Abdul Rashid Dostum’s bodyguards on charges related to the alleged abduction and sexual assault of a political rival, who accused the vice president of sodomizing him with a rifle. Gen. Dostum has denied the accusations. His office called them a baseless effort to defame the vice president, and said it would cooperate with a government investigation. The arrest warrants for the bodyguards were issued on Monday after the men ignored three summonses to appear before Attorney General Mohammad Farid Hamidi for questioning, the attorney general said.”

Egypt

Newsweek: Giulio Regeni: Egypt Accepts Italy’s Request To Send Experts To Probe Murder

“Egypt agreed Sunday to allow Italian experts to travel to Cairo to examine CCTV footage as part of a probe into the murder of Italian student Giulio Regeni. ‘The Egyptian public prosecutor approved the Italian side’s request to send Italian experts,’ a prosecution statement read. On January 25, 2016, 28-year-old Regeni disappeared. His body was discovered more than a week later at the side of a road on the outskirts of the Egyptian capital. Regeni, a PhD researcher at the University of Cambridge, had been conducting work on Egyptian labor unions before his disappearance—a delicate issue because the threat of large strikes and heightened unrest in the country.”

Middle East

Times Of Israel: IDF Soldier Lightly Injured In West Bank Pipe Bomb Attack

“An Israeli soldier was lightly wounded by a pipe bomb that exploded next to him on a road in the northern West Bank on Monday night, the army said. Earlier in the evening, the Israel Defense Forces had received reports of burning tires outside the village of Mughayir, northeast of Ramallah, a military spokesperson said. A group of soldiers were called to the area to investigate. One of them approached a burning tire, but it ‘turned out to be an explosive device’ and detonated, the army said.”

The Jerusalem Post: Community Mourns Death Of Jewish Girl, 10, Killed In Australia Car Attack

“The father of a 10-year-old Jewish Melbourne girl killed in a rampage by a crazed driver in the city’s downtown is at the bedside of his wife and nine-year-old daughter who were critically injured in the incident. Thalia Hakin was one five of people including a 3-month-old baby killed when Dimitri Gargasoulo, 26, drove a stolen car wildly in circles at a busy intersection in the Central Business District and then ploughed the car into pedestrians in a nearby street. Local media reports that about 20 people were injured in the incident. Tony Hakin, father of Thalia, reportedly has remained at the hospital bedsides of his wife, Naomi, and their daughter Maggie, 9.”

Haaretz: Israel Investigates Lethal Shooting Of Palestinian Teen In Clashes With Army

“Investigators are looking into the lethal shooting of 17-year-old Qusai al-Amour in the West Bank village of Tuqu, which occurred during clashes between Palestinians and the Israeli army last week. The incident, which took place last Monday, drew criticism after a video captured Israel Defense Forces soldiers dragging al-Amour by his limbs while his head banged against the ground. The army explained that the soldiers evacuated al-Amour from the site because they were being pelted by stones, and that they took him to their vehicle to try to resuscitate him. The police and army have opened an investigation into the shooting.”

Times Of Israel: As Anti-Semitic Tides Rise, Diaspora Turns To Israel For Help

“Leaders of Jewish communities across Europe called on Israel Monday to help them tackle the rising threat of terrorism and anti-Semitism, saying that the Jewish state can provide vital security assistance against potential attacks. Speaking at the European Jewish Association’s annual Jewish Leaders Conference here in the Belgian capital, community leaders spoke of how growing anti-Semitic sentiment caused by both far-right political gains and left-wing anti-Zionist activists have led to an increasing number of attacks and other incidents across Europe.”

Times Of Israel: Boy Burning Israeli Flag The Spotlight Of Hamas Graduation

“Dozens of Palestinian on Sunday graduated from the Hamas terror group’s military training program in the Gaza Strip, displaying weapons, marching in military formation and burning an Israeli flag in front of crowds of cheering supporters. The cadets showed off their hand-to-hand combat skills by breaking burning cement blocks with their bare hands at the Gaza City ceremony. The graduates also staged a mock raid on an “Israeli” military post, in which Hamas forces captured the IDF position and replaced the Israeli flag with a Palestinian one.”

United Kingdom

The Times Of Israel: Spate Of Anti-Semitic Attacks Hits London Over Weekend

“British police have opened investigations into a string of attacks against the Jewish community in north London over the weekend. A volunteer neighborhood watch program told the Jewish Press news site that three separate hate crimes targeting ‘recognizably Jewish’ residents of the Edgware district took place between late Friday and Saturday. According to Shomrim North West London, the neighborhood watch group, on Friday night one family was pelted with eggs by unidentified assailants in a passing car.”

Germany

Bloomberg: Germany Is Growing More Tolerant Of Extremism

“The values of modern Germany — and its ability to return to a global leadership role in recent years — have been based on a blanket rejection of the country’s totalitarian past, both Nazi and Communist. That rejection is now being tested as higher tolerance for both left-wing and right-wing extremes begins to emerge. Two episodes have illustrated this in recent days. One is the acrimonious battle over the exit of one-time Stasi trainee Andrej Holm from the city government in Berlin as well as Humboldt University. The other is a decision by the German constitutional court against banning the neo-Nazi National Democratic Party (NPD).”

France

Newsweek: Alleged French ISIS Recruiter Charged With Terrorism Offenses After Four Years In Syria

“French authorities have arrested and charged a man alleged to have been a key recruiter for the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) in Syria, officials said Sunday. Kevin Guiavarch, 24, is in French custody after he was extradited from Turkey. Authorities have charged him with preliminary terrorism offenses while their investigation continues, a judicial official told the Associated Press. Guiavarch was charged with association with terrorist criminals and the financing of extremist activity, according to the official, who gave no details on where the suspect had been in Syria.”

Europe

Daily Caller: It Takes As Little As ‘Six Weeks’ To Morph From Regular Joe To Jihadi John

“The radicalization process for someone to go from having a completely normal life to becoming a dangerous terrorist can take as little as six weeks, according to a top Europol official. Homegrown terrorism wreaks havoc across the Western world, from the U.S. to Germany. Security officials have studied the radicalization process in an effort to curb terrorist attacks, but it appears that the time window they have to work with is quite short. It is not uncommon for former criminals to engage in a life of terror. Groups like the Islamic State and al-Qaida often specifically target criminals for recruitment.”

Financing of Terrorism

SANA: Arab Funding Supports Extremism In The Balkans

“Austrian security sources revealed that Arab money feeds and supports extremism in the Balkans. Funds, obtained through suspicious donations, are directed to Islamic centers, schools and mosques in Balkan countries. The money is used for recruitment of young people with the aim of dispatching them to fight alongside terrorists in Syria and Iraq. Austrian newspaper Die Presse quoted the sources as saying that “the Balkans have become a breeding ground for extremism and terrorism.” They pointed out that the next danger lies in the infiltration of some of them into Austria. The sources spoke about the presence of some 1000 terrorists on Austrian soil, warning that they pose a serious threat to Austrian authorities and the society.”

ISIS

Akhbar Alaan: Mosul: ISIS Forcing Women To Fund Its Activities

“A source from the city of Mosul revealed that ISIS has started forming committees whose mission is to compel all women in Mosul to ‘donate’ their gold jewelry to finance the organization. The source claimed ISIS’s Hisbah Diwan had formed committees which oblige all women of Mosul to hand over their gold jewels. These committees imposed sanctions on a group of women who refused to take part in the new donation effort. The source, who asked not to be named, was quoted as saying: “Hisbah Diwan militants in the Mosul neighborhood of Dawasa handcuffed four women and whipped them publicly for their failure to support the organization.”

Muslim Brotherhood

24: Researcher: International Organization Of Muslim Brotherhood Considers Moving Its Funds From America To Europe

“Mohammed Kamal, a researcher on the affairs of Islamic movements, claimed that the Muslim Brotherhood is currently in a state of “extreme anxiety” fearing imminent decisions being adopted against it by the new US administration. The group fears it will be added to the terror list, the movements of its leaders will be restricted and its assets and activities frozen. Kamal added that the group’s leaders are now seriously considering ways of breaking the impasse. He noted that one of the options is to move the group’s activities and assets out of the USA to EU countries and Britain, in order to protect the interests of the international organization.”

Alnabaa: Muslim Brotherhood Launches New TV Channel

“Brotherhood-affiliated Mekameleen TV satellite channel, owned by businessmen with close ties to the group, decided to launch a pilot broadcast of the new channel. The “Mekameleen 2” channel will be aired tonight at 9:00 pm (Egypt time). Mekameleen’s spokesman explained, in a statement, that “Mekameleen 2” will be broadcast on “Nilesat” at HD quality. The full broadcast schedule of the new channel will begin next month. One of the programs on the channel will be a talk show called “Kalam Kabir” (Big Words) hosted by Mohammed Naser. “Mekameleen 2” is the third Brotherhood-owned channel, after Mekameleen was launched three years ago, and Al Watan TV launched last year.”

Houthi

Barakish Net: Armed Houthi Group Seizes A Business Complex Belonging To Businessman In Sanaa

“Sheikh Fares Ahmed Al-Harthy, a businessman from the southern Yemeni province of Shabwa, continues his sit-in for the fourth straight month in Saada province, demanding the return of his real estate and commercial properties, allegedly seized by force of arms. The businessman claims his properties were taken by an armed gang affiliated with Yahia Badreddin al-Houthi, who presently serves as the Minister of Education in the Houthi government. Yahia is also the brother of the leader of the Houthi group. Al Harthy is the owner of a commercial complex boasting investments of more than two billion Yemeni riyals ($8 million). A source close to him asserted that the complex was looted by an armed gang affiliated with Houthis. So far, all his pleas to return the stolen goods have been ignored. The source disclosed that several years ago, after Al Harthy had received permits from the authorities, he built an integrated commercial complex in the capital Sanaa. This complex, consisting of 320 shops, is called “Commercial Capital Markets.” A short time after the Houthis’ takeover of Sanaa, an armed group broke into the “Markets” and seized it by force.”

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