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Islamic State leader calls for jihad in audio message

The leader of the Islamic State, formerly Isis, has released the first audiotape calling for jihad since the group renamed. The group is currently battling Iraqi forces across large parts of the country.

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Isis 'annual report boasts over a 1000 murders'

In March this year, Isis published an annual report covering its activities between November 2012 and November 2013. The annual report, "al-Naba" evaluated and translated by the Institute of War Studies, divides the attacks into categories and by region.

  • In 2013, the group boasted of killing 1083 people, up almost a hundred from their annual report the year before
  • In 2013 the group said they managed to free "hundreds" of prisoners, whilst the year before they reported being able to free only "dozens"
  • The group also said they launched 1047 "targeted attacks" such as improvised explosive devices (IEDs)

The US-based Institute for the Study of War said it was important to consider that the number of attacks could be exaggerated, but concluded:

ISIS is not simply a terrorist organization, but rather an armed insurgency moving to control terrain.

The pursuit of a controlled military campaign by ISIS in Iraq and Syria undergirds their pursuit of a transnational emirate.

This is a military enemy that requires a considered strategy, military as well as involving anti-ISIS Sunni populations, to defeat it, or it

will become a permanent fixture in the Middle East.

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