May 1, 2014 (AFGHANISTAN): A suicide bomber detonated an explosives-laden vehicle in Panjshir Province, killing six policemen and six road construction workers. Panjshir Province, which is usually peaceful, is fiercely anti-Taliban. – Reuters, May 1

May 1, 2014 (YEMEN): Yemeni security forces killed seven fighters from al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) in Abyan Province. One of those killed was an Uzbek AQAP commander known as Abu Muslim al-Uzbeki. – Voice of America, May 1

May 1, 2014 (NIGERIA): A car bomb exploded on a busy street in the Nigerian capital of Abuja, killing approximately 19 people. – AP, May 1

May 2, 2014 (SYRIA): Al-Qa`ida chief Ayman al-Zawahiri released a new video message, in which he said that Iraqi al-Qa`ida’s entry into Syria’s civil war has caused “a political disaster.” Al-Zawahiri said in the video message that if the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) had accepted his decision to stay out of Syria and had instead worked to “busy itself with Iraq, which needs double its efforts,” then it could have avoided the “waterfall of blood” caused by militant infighting. As explained by Reuters, Iraqi al-Qa`ida “militants joined the conflict in Syria last year and unilaterally declared they were taking over the Nusra Front, which had won the admiration of many rebels fighting Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad for its battlefield prowess…Al-Zawahiri, who has run al-Qa`ida since Usama bin Ladin was killed in May 2011, accused ISIL’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, of ‘sedition’ and said rebel disunity had been handed ‘on a plate of gold’ to Assad, the ultimate target of all Sunni Islamist groups in Syria.” – Reuters, May 3

May 2, 2014 (SYRIA): Two car bombs exploded in two villages in Hama Province, killing 18 people. – Voice of America, May 2

May 2, 2014 (EGYPT): A suicide bomber in the South Sinai killed an Egyptian soldier. – Reuters, May 2

May 2, 2014 (EGYPT): A car bomb killed a policeman at a traffic security post in Cairo. – Reuters, May 2

May 2, 2014 (YEMEN): Al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) threatened to attack any party involved in U.S. drone operations in Yemen. “For us, all such establishments are legitimate targets,” warned AQAP’s Qasim al-Raymi. “We won’t wait for them to come to us—we will go to them.” Al-Raymi accused Yemeni security forces of helping the United States track AQAP’s vehicles. – AFP, May 3

May 2, 2014 (YEMEN): Yemeni forces killed five al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) militants in Shabwa Province. The attack came on the fourth day of a Yemeni military offensive against the group and its allies. – Reuters, May 2

May 3, 2014 (IRAQ): Gunmen killed four Sunni anti-al-Qa`ida militiamen in Tarmiyya, 30 miles north of Baghdad. – AP, May 3

May 3, 2014 (YEMEN): Al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula announced that Ali bin Likra al-Kazimy died after succumbing to injuries days after an attack by the Yemeni military and U.S. drone aircraft in the town of Mahfad. – Guardian, May 3

May 3, 2014 (SYRIA): Jabhat al-Nusra, al-Qa`ida’s affiliate in Syria, kidnapped Ahmed Nehmeh, a Western-backed military leader in the Dar`a Military Council, after he criticized extremist groups. According to the National, “his abduction is a setback for the rebels’ efforts to unify their ranks and push a new offensive against the forces of President Bashar al-Assad on the southern front. It also shows that although the south is widely considered the most coherent opposition bloc in the country, it is also affected by lingering rebel schisms.” – The National, May 6

May 3, 2014 (JORDAN): The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) released a video calling on residents of the southern Jordanian city of Maan to begin jihad against the Jordanian government. In the video, an ISIL fighter said that the Jordanian government is a “regime that has ruled over the Muslims for dozens of years according to [laws] differing from those of the Qur’an and the Sunna of the Prophet. It rules them instead according to infidel man-made laws. It is a regime that kills Muslims and aggresses their sacred places…it is a regime that battles jihad and the mujahidin in all the jihad arenas…” The speaker also called on Jordanian tribes in Maan to turn against the Jordanian government. – Jerusalem Post, May 6

May 4, 2014 (SYRIA): Jabhat al-Nusra, al-Qa`ida’s affiliate in Syria, set its conditions for a cessation of fighting with its rival group, the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). The ISIL, which was formerly al-Qa`ida’s affiliate in Iraq until Ayman al-Zawahiri disowned the group, has engaged in bloody infighting with Jabhat al-Nusra. According to Jabhat al-Nusra, “as soon as the ISIL announces an end to its attacks on Muslims, we will spontaneously stop firing.” – AFP, May 4

May 5, 2014 (IRAQ): A car bomb exploded outside a restaurant in Kirkuk, killing three people. –, May 5

May 5, 2014 (UNITED ARAB EMIRATES): A court hearing began for nine suspected al-Qa`ida members accused of plotting attacks in the United Arab Emirates. The nine suspects are charged with “planning attacks damaging to the country’s security and (foreign) residents.” The nine are Arab nationals, mostly from North Africa. One is being tried in absentia. – AFP, May 6

May 5, 2014 (YEMEN): Gunmen killed a Frenchman who was working as a security agent for the European Union’s mission in Sana`a. On May 7, Yemeni security forces said that they killed the man responsible for the attack, who was identified as Wael Abdallah Masoud al-Waeli, along with one of his accomplices. Authorities captured a third member of the group alive. According to Yemen’s supreme security committee, al-Waeli had organized other attacks on Westerners. – Reuters, May 7

May 5, 2014 (NIGERIA): Suspected Boko Haram gunmen kidnapped eight girls from the village of Warabe in northeastern Nigeria. The girls were between the ages of 12 and 15. According to local residents, the gunmen arrived in two vehicles and took the girls away on trucks, along with food and livestock that they stole from the village. – Chicago Tribune, May 6

May 5, 2014 (NIGERIA): Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau released a new video message, in which he threatened to sell the more than 200 teenage schoolgirls the group abducted in April. “By Allah, I will sell them in the marketplace,” he threatened in the hour-long video. – USA Today, May 5

May 6, 2014 (SAUDI ARABIA): Saudi authorities announced that they broke up a “major terrorist network” linked to al-Qa`ida groups in Iraq, Yemen and Syria that was plotting attacks against foreign interests and government installations in Saudi Arabia. The Saudi Interior Ministry said that they had arrested 62 suspected members of the group, including 35 Saudi nationals and three foreigners. An additional 44 suspects remain on the loose. Saudi authorities said that the network had made direct contact with the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), and that the network was plotting “large-scale assassinations” in addition to other attacks on Saudi government installations and foreign interests. As stated by the Guardian, “The announcement comes against a background of growing anxiety in the conservative kingdom about the risk of ‘blowback’ from jihadi groups fighting in Syria, despite enthusiastic Saudi government and private financial and logistical support for the overthrow of President Bashar al-Assad.” – Guardian, May 6

May 6, 2014 (YEMEN): Gunmen bombed Yemen’s main oil export pipeline, halting the flow of crude. According to Reuters, “The pipeline was bombed twice in less than 12 hours late on Tuesday [May 6] in an area between the central Marib Province and the capital, Sana`a…” It was not immediately clear who was responsible for the attack, as both Yemeni tribesmen and al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula have targeted pipelines and other infrastructure in the past. – Reuters, May 7

May 6, 2014 (YEMEN): Yemeni troops secured control of the al-Mahfad area of Abyan Province, which has served as a stronghold for al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula. – Reuters, May 7

May 7, 2014 (SYRIA): Hundreds of Syrian rebels left their last stronghold in Homs as part of a deal brokered by Iran and facilitated by the United Nations. As explained by the BBC, “Much of Homs fell to the opposition in 2011, but over the past two years [Syrian] government forces have gradually regained control by subjecting areas once home to tens of thousands to continuous siege and bombardment…It marks the end of three years of resistance in the central city [of Homs], once dubbed the ‘capital of the revolution’ against President Bashar al-Assad.” – BBC, May 7

May 8, 2014 (AFGHANISTAN): The Afghan Taliban announced the start of its annual spring offensive. In its statement, the group warned that it would target “military gatherings of foreign invading forces, their diplomatic centers and convoys as well as the military bases of their internal mercenary stooges, their convoys and the facilities of foreign, interior, intelligence and Arbaki militia [government-supported local armed groups].” According to the Afghan government, more than 13,000 Afghan soldiers and police officers have been killed in the country since 2001, while, according to an Associated Press count, at least 2,179 U.S. military members have died in that same time period. – NBC News, May 8

May 8, 2014 (PAKISTAN): A bomb targeted a Pakistani military vehicle in the tribal areas near the border with Afghanistan, killing nine Pakistani soldiers. – RFE/RL, May 8

May 8, 2014 (IRAQ): A bomb exploded inside a small café in a Baghdad suburb, killing four people. – AP, May 8

May 8, 2014 (IRAQ): A bomb exploded on a commercial street in Baghdad’s Dora district, killing two people. – AP, May 8

May 9, 2014 (IRAQ): Iraqi security forces launched an operation to retake areas of Falluja, which has been held by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). The purpose of the operation was to lay the groundwork for a future military assault on the city. – Dawn, May 10

May 9, 2014 (YEMEN): Suspected al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula militants attempted to assassinate Yemeni Defense Minister Muhammad Nasr Ahmad in Shabwa Province. – Voice of America, May 9

May 9, 2014 (YEMEN): Militants from al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula killed three Yemeni soldiers at a checkpoint near the presidential palace in Sana`a. – Voice of America, May 9

May 10, 2014 (IRAQ): The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant attacked a small Iraqi military base in Ninawa Province, capturing 20 soldiers who were subsequently executed. – AFP, May 10

May 10, 2014 (EGYPT): Egyptian authorities charged 200 suspected militants with carrying out more than 50 terrorist attacks, killing 40 policemen and 15 civilians, and collaborating with the Palestinian militant group Hamas. All of the defendants allegedly belong to Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis. Ninety-eight of the defendants were tried in absentia. – AP, May 10

May 11, 2014 (GLOBAL): A spokesman for the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) sharply criticized Ayman al-Zawahiri, rejecting the al-Qa`ida chief’s call to leave Syria. “Shaykh Usama [bin Ladin] gathered all the mujahidin with one word, but you [al-Zawahiri] divided them and tore them apart,” said the spokesman. “We call on you to undo your fatal mistake…because you are the one who kindled sedition, you are the one who will extinguish it.” He also accused Ayman al-Zawahiri and al-Qa`ida of protecting Iran from militant attacks during the past several years. The ISIL’s spokesman said that al-Qa`ida had issued orders to Islamist militants not to attack Iran or its interests. – AFP, May 12; AP, May 12; al-Arabiya, May 12

May 11, 2014 (SYRIA): The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant reportedly took control of key parts of Dayr al-Zur Province from other rebel groups. – Reuters, May 11

May 11, 2014 (YEMEN): A suicide bomber in a vehicle killed 10 Yemeni soldiers and one civilian in an attack on a military police building in the southern coastal city of Mukalla. – Reuters, May 11

May 11, 2014 (AFGHANISTAN): A suicide bomber in a vehicle killed at least five people in Kandahar Province. – RFE/RL, May 11

May 11, 2014 (PAKISTAN): A suicide bomber killed at least four people at a soccer stadium in northwest Pakistan. The bomber apparently targeted refugees from Khyber Agency as they registered with the government in the stadium. – Voice of America, May 11

May 12, 2014 (AFGHANISTAN): To mark the start of its spring offensive, Taliban fighters killed two police guards and then stormed a government building in Jalalabad. Separately, Taliban fighters launched rockets at Kabul International Airport, but caused no damage. They also launched rockets at Bagram airbase, although that attack did not cause any casualties. – CBS News, May 12

May 12, 2014 (YEMEN): A suspected U.S. drone strike killed six al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula militants in Marib Province. – AP, May 12

May 12, 2014 (SOMALIA): A suicide bomber in a vehicle apparently tried to assassinate Abdi Fatah Gesey, a former governor, but instead killed at least 12 people, including Somali government soldiers and civilians, in Baidoa. Gesey was unharmed. – al-Jazira, May 12

May 13, 2014 (IRAQ): A series of car bombs struck Shi`a districts in Baghdad, killing at least 25 people. – BBC, May 13

May 13, 2014 (NIGERIA): According to Reuters, “Nigeria’s government signaled willingness on Tuesday [May 13] to negotiate with Islamist militants holding more than 200 schoolgirls, a month after the kidnap that has provoked global outrage.” Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau recently said that the group would release the girls in exchange for a number of Boko Haram militants currently imprisoned by the Nigerian government. – Reuters, May 13

May 13, 2014 (NIGERIA): Boko Haram militants ambushed and killed four Nigerian soldiers outside Maiduguri in northeastern Nigeria. – Reuters, May 14

May 15, 2014 (SYRIA): A car bomb killed at least 29 people near the Bab al-Salama border crossing with Turkey. – CNN, May 15

May 16, 2014 (IRAQ): Gunmen opened fire from a speeding vehicle on a security checkpoint manned by anti-al-Qa`ida Sunni fighters near Balad, killing three of them. – AP, May 16

May 16, 2014 (CAMEROON): Suspected Boko Haram militants attacked a Chinese plant near Waza in northern Cameroon. Waza lies just 12 miles from the Nigerian border close to the Sambisa Forest, an area known for being a Boko Haram hideout. According to Reuters, “Chinese state news agency Xinhua quoted Chinese officials as saying unidentified assailants had attacked the camp of a Chinese enterprise operating in Cameroon on Friday night, injuring one person and leaving 10 unaccounted for.” – Reuters, May 17

May 16, 2014 (KENYA): Two bombs ripped through a market near central Nairobi, killing 10 people. – Guardian, May 16

May 17, 2014 (KENYA): The United States said that it was preparing to reduce staff levels at its embassy in Nairobi due to the growing threat of attacks in Kenya by Islamist militants. As stated by Agence France-Presse, “The move comes after a wave of shootings, bombings and grenade attacks in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, and the port city of Mombasa. Authorities have blamed the attacks on militants connected to Somalia’s al-Qa`ida-linked al-Shabab rebels.” – AFP, May 17

May 18, 2014 (SOMALIA): Kenyan fighter jets attacked al-Shabab facilities in Somalia. – Bloomberg, May 18

May 18, 2014 (NIGERIA): A suicide bomber in a vehicle killed five people on a street known for popular bars and restaurants in Kano. – Reuters, May 18

May 19, 2014 (UNITED STATES): A U.S. court found radical Islamic preacher Abu Hamza guilty of terrorism charges. As stated by the Telegraph, “Hamza was accused of providing material support to terrorist organizations by enabling hostage-takers in the Yemen kidnapping to speak on a satellite phone, by sending men to establish an al-Qa`ida training camp in the U.S. state of Oregon, and by sending at least one man to training camps in Afghanistan.” Hamza was extradited from the United Kingdom to the United States in 2012. – Telegraph, May 19

May 19, 2014 (UNITED ARAB EMIRATES): The United Arab Emirates referred nine expatriate Arabs to a state security court, accusing them of joining al-Qa`ida, collecting donations and recruiting fighters for Jabhat al-Nusra in Syria. – Reuters, May 19

May 19, 2014 (PAKISTAN): Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan kidnapped a Chinese tourist who was on a cycling tour of the country. The cyclist was kidnapped near Dera Ismail Khan in western Pakistan. – Reuters, May 20

May 20, 2014 (AFGHANISTAN): Taliban fighters killed eight Afghan policemen and kidnapped 27 other policemen in Badakhshan Province. In a rare move, the Taliban freed 23 of the police officers as a gesture of “mercy” one week later. – Washington Post, May 23; Washington Post, May 27

May 20, 2014 (NIGERIA): Two car bombs exploded at a busy bus terminal and market in Jos, killing at least 118 people. According to the Associated Press, “the second blast came half an hour after the first, killing some of the rescue workers who had rushed to the scene, which was obscured by billows of black smoke.” There was no immediate claim of responsibility, although authorities suspect that the Boko Haram group is to blame. – AP, May 20

May 22, 2014 (UNITED STATES): The U.S. Justice Department has assigned a veteran prosecutor to monitor the flow of foreign fighters, including Americans, to Syria. The FBI has also created a special team to identify U.S. citizens traveling to Syria to fight. – Reuters, May 22

May 22, 2014 (SYRIA): The United Kingdom said that Syria has made no progress in giving up its last batch of chemical weapons, with the Bashar al-Assad regime claiming that the weapons are inaccessible due to fighting. – Reuters, May 22

May 22, 2014 (IRAQ): A suicide bomber detonated explosives among Shi`a pilgrims in Baghdad’s Mansur district, killing 11 people. – CNN, May 22

May 22, 2014 (IRAQ): A suicide bomber in a vehicle killed eight people in a commercial district in Baghdad. – CNN, May 22

May 22, 2014 (CHINA): Two vehicles ploughed into a market in Urumqi, the capital of China’s restive Xinjiang Province. One of the vehicles exploded, killing more than 30 people. According to Australian media, “It was not immediately clear who was responsible for the attack, but recent violence in the region has been blamed on extremists from Xinjiang’s native Turkic Uighur Muslim ethnic group seeking to overthrow Chinese rule in the region.” –, May 22

May 23, 2014 (YEMEN): A suicide bomber in an explosives-laden vehicle targeted a checkpoint manned by Shi`a Muslim Huthi fighters in al-Jawf Province in northern Yemen, killing at least three people. – Reuters, May 23

May 24, 2014 (BELGIUM): A gunman shot and killed four people in an attack on the Jewish Museum in Brussels. French authorities later arrested Mehdi Nemmouche at a bus station in Marseille after he arrived on a coach from Amsterdam via Brussels. Nemmouche allegedly spent more than a year training in Syria with the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant. Nemmouche reportedly admitted to the museum attack in a video. – France 24, June 1; BBC, June 1

May 24, 2014 (DJIBOUTI): A suicide bombing at a restaurant filled with Western military personnel killed three people. Al-Shabab claimed responsibility. – al-Jazira, May 25; AFP, May 27

May 24, 2014 (IRAQ): A car bomb exploded outside a liquor store in Kirkuk, killing at least seven people. – Sky News, May 25

May 24, 2014 (NIGERIA): The United Nations added Boko Haram to its list of al-Qa`ida associates subject to financial sanctions and an arms embargo. – AFP, May 24

May 24, 2014 (PAKISTAN): Two small bombs exploded in the heart of Islamabad, killing a security guard. – Reuters, May 24

May 24, 2014 (YEMEN): Heavily-armed al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) militants attacked the southern city of Seyoun in Hadramawt Province. The militants targeted an army base, the Central Bank building, the city’s central security headquarters, the traffic police department, the post office and the agricultural bank. At least 10 Yemeni soldiers and 15 AQAP militants were killed. – al-Jazira, May 24

May 24, 2014 (SOMALIA): Al-Shabab militants undertook a complex attack on Somalia’s parliament building, killing at least one soldier. The attack involved a car bomb, a suicide bomber and gunmen on foot. – Times, May 24

May 25, 2014 (UNITED STATES/SYRIA): Moner Mohammad Abu-Salha, a U.S. citizen from Florida, blew himself up in an attack on Syrian government troops in Syria. According to the New York Times, “The [U.S.] officials said they believed that Mr. Abusalha, who adopted the nom de guerre Abu Huraira al-Amriki, used a large truck in helping to carry out the bombing in the northern province of Idlib, where he had traveled after spending two months in a training camp of the militant group the Nusra Front in Aleppo. The officials said they thought it was the first time an American had been involved in a suicide attack in Syria.” – New York Times, May 30

May 25, 2014 (AFGHANISTAN): A suicide bomber wearing a burqa killed Abdul Wadood Sarhadi Jajo, a prominent police commander, in Kandahar. – Wall Street Journal, May 25

May 25, 2014 (LEBANON): Lebanese security forces arrested Omar Bakri Muhammad, a radical Islamic cleric who spent years in the United Kingdom. He had been on the run in Lebanon since April, when Lebanese security forces raided his home in Tripoli. According to the New York Times, “Lebanese authorities viewed him with increasing concern after he expressed support for an extremist group that has taken over parts of northern Syria, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, and called for it to activate cells in Lebanon. He has denied links to al-Qa`ida, but has called for the group’s flag to be flown over Lebanon’s presidential palace.” – New York Times, May 25

May 25, 2014 (YEMEN): Yemeni security forces killed a senior leader from al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula during a raid near Sana`a. The leader was identified as Salih al-Tais. – Reuters, May 25

May 26, 2014 (AFGHANISTAN): A suicide bomber on a motorcycle rammed into a bus carrying soldiers and civilian employees in Kabul, killing two Afghan Defense Ministry staffers. – AP, May 26

May 27, 2014 (NORWAY): Norwegian police announced that they arrested three people suspected of aiding the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). At least two of the three suspects are accused of having joined the ISIL as foreign fighters. Two of the men were born in the former Yugoslavia, while the third is from Somalia. – Reuters, May 27

May 27, 2014 (IRAQ): A suicide bomber attacked a Shi`a mosque in Baghdad, killing at least 19 people. – AFP, May 27

May 28, 2014 (PAKISTAN): Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) announced a separation between the Mehsud faction, which is led by Khan Said (also known as Sajna), and another faction led by TTP chief Maulana Fazlullah. The Mehsud faction said that they were cutting ties with Fazlullah since his faction is too violent and unpredictable. – UPI, May 29

May 29, 2014 (YEMEN): A gunman riding on the back of a motorcycle assassinated a Yemeni intelligence officer and his son in broad daylight in Mukalla, Hadramawt Province. – AFP, May 30

May 30, 2014 (SPAIN): Spanish police broke up a jihadist cell operating in the country, arresting six individuals in Spain’s North African territory of Melilla. According to Spain’s Interior Ministry, the cell was recruiting and sending jihadists to “terrorist organizations” based in Mali and Libya. – AFP, May 30

May 30, 2014 (NIGERIA): Suspected Boko Haram gunmen killed a traditional Muslim amir in Borno State. – Reuters, May 30

May 31, 2014 (UNITED STATES/AFGHANISTAN): Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, the only American prisoner of war held by the Taliban, was released to U.S. forces in exchange for five Taliban prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Bergdahl was captured by the Taliban nearly five years ago. – New York Times, May 31

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