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The Moscow Attack, Afghanistan’s Islamic State Branch and the Ukraine War

This week on Hold Your Fire! Richard talks with Crisis Group experts Jerome Drevon, Ibraheem Bahiss and Olga Oliker about the attack on Crocus City Hall in a Moscow suburb claimed by the Islamic State (ISIS), how the group and its affiliates have evolved in recent years and the potential implications of the strike for Russian politics and the war in Ukraine. Richard first talks with Jerome and Ibraheem about what we know about the attack and the involvement of ISIS and the group’s affiliate in Afghanistan, Islamic State-Khorasan Province (IS-KP). They discuss how ISIS’s structure has evolved after losing its territory in Iraq and Syria and how much of a global threat it and its affiliates now pose. They also discuss the Taliban’s fight against IS-KP and its relations with outside powers worried about threats emanating from Afghanistan. Richard then talks with Olga about the attacks’ implications for Russia, Moscow’s attempts to link responsibility to Kyiv and what that might mean for the war in Ukraine.

Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts or Spotify. 

For more in-depth analysis of topics discussed in this episode, check out our recent Q&A ISIS Strikes Moscow, our 2016 report Exploiting Disorder: al-Qaeda and the Islamic State and our Jihad in Modern Conflict page. For more reading on the topic, check out The Exile: The Stunning Inside Story of Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda in Flight by Adrian Levy and Catherine Scott-Clark.

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