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Present Context

  • The U.S. has started bringing home troops from Syria as it moves to a new phase in the campaign against Islamic State (IS), US claiming that the militant Islamist group’s “territorial caliphate” has been defeated.
  • US declared victory against the group and made clear that there is no further grounds for remaining in Syria.

Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS)

  • The Islamic jihadist group is an unrecognized terror outfit based in Iraq and Syria, that made international headlines and has emerged as one of the most dangerous terror organization like that of al Qaeda and Taliban.
  • It maintains a stronghold near the borders of Levant (Eastern Mediterranean), Lebanon, Israel, Palestine, Jordan, Cyprus, and Southern Turkey.
  • The main goal of ISIS is to establish a caliphate in the Sunni-dominated areas of Iraq and Syria, which can be ruled by a Caliph.
  • ISIS came into existence in 2004 and since then it has changed its name many times from al Qaeda in Iraq” (AQI) to Hilf al-Mutayibeen to “Islamic State of Iraq (ISI)” to “Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham” to al-Dawla to Dawla al Islamiya, among many others.
  • It has carried out various attacks in the past in Iraq killing thousands of civilians. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is said to be one of the top ISIS leaders.
  • ISIS major source of finance is through smuggling of raw materials of archaeological antiques, oil and an extortion racket and its total worth is believed to be $2bn.
  • ISIS takes immense pleasure in video recording of amputation and crucification videos and then uploading it on social media sites.

Source: The Hindu