Tag Archives: Abu Jihad

Umar Shishani’s Biographer Distances Him From Imarat Kavkaz Bayah

Just a few notes about something I found interesting in the recent biography of Umar Shishani that has been published in IS’s An Naba magazine, in the light of my recent post about the early days of the North Caucasian involvement in the Syrian conflict, and the ongoing attempts by Umar Shishani’s camp in IS (led by Abu Jihad) to deny that both Umar and Abu Jihad ever had a bayah (pledge of allegiance) to the Caucasus Emirate.

tl;dr: Abu Jihad throws shade at Imarat Kavkaz with the ultimate diss — pretending they never existed.

Continue reading Umar Shishani’s Biographer Distances Him From Imarat Kavkaz Bayah

Meet Alibek, Ethnic Karachay Close To Abu Jihad Who Helps Run Furat Media

For the past few months, we have been tracking Voenkorr, one of the most prolific Russian-speaking Islamic State members who is also involved in IS’s Russian-language media group run by Abu Jihad. Here is some very interesting information about his background and radicalization, which ultimately led to his joining IS. Continue reading Meet Alibek, Ethnic Karachay Close To Abu Jihad Who Helps Run Furat Media

Akhmad Chatayev Led IS’s North Caucasian Badr Katiba In Kobani, With Heavy Losses


In the light of the current media storm over the rumors that Chechen IS militant Akhmad Chatayev was behind the recent terrorist bombings in Istanbul, we are sharing some more information about him and his activities in Syria here. This is not to confirm the rumors in any way, but simply to add some facts to an increasingly speculative conversation. Continue reading Akhmad Chatayev Led IS’s North Caucasian Badr Katiba In Kobani, With Heavy Losses

Furat Media Releases New Video Featuring Deso Dogg

IS’s Furat Media, led by Abu Jihad, has used German former rapper-turned-militant Deso Dogg aka Denis Cuspert for their new recruitment new video, “Rejoice In The Deal You Have Secured.”

Which sounds like a mortgage lender advert, but it’s not. In true Abu Jihad fashion, the video is a whopping 32 minutes long.*

I wrote about Cuspert’s part in this video here for RFE/RL where I wrote a little bit about the wider significance of the video.

Here are some more thoughts/ notes on the video. I do not have time to transcribe the whole video but there are some excerpts below from some of the speeches and a translation of Cuspert’s speech — or at least of the Russian subtitles.

This video is a self- congratulatory showreel, really, in which Abu Jihad and his Furat Media group have managed to gather together all of the popular Dagestani preachers he has recruited — including Nadir Abu Khalid, Akhmed Medinsky and Kamil Abu Sultan ad-Daghestani (Sultanakhmedov) — into one lineup and have them perform.

The theme of the video is the establishment of IS’s “province” in the North Caucasus, Vilayat Kavkaz.

Sultanakhmedov opens by greeting “the residents of the Caucasus in general and in particular to the mujahideen who have become part of this global project which our ummah has awaited for over 100 years.”

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He then addresses Rustam Asildarov, aka Emir Abu Muhammad Kadarsky, the leader of the Vilayat Kavkaz, saying that he has become the Wali of the residents of the North Caucasus in general,

Here’s Nadir Abu Khalid.

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And here’s Medinsky, who is a real rabble rouser and perhaps the most charismatic of the lineup. As I said, I don’t have time to translate all their speeches but they are on the same topic: join IS in the North Caucasus because it brings prestige.

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I did translate Cuspert’s speech, since I used some of it in the RFE/RL story above. At least, I translated the Russian subtitles since I don’t speak German:

First I would like to greet my dear brothers in Vilayat Kavkaz with the best of greetings. I praise Allah who made you a part of this caliphate and made your province its province. This is the grace of Allah, that he took you out of decline and chaos and gave you light, the light of the caliphate, the light of victory. The light that lights up your path to paradise and which will lead you to the highest level. This was the reason for the blood shed by your martyrs. The blood that has been flowing for several years. Today we are in the land of the caliphate, in teh land of Sham. We decided to send a greeting to the vilayat Kavkaz, to our dear brother mujahideen. Dear brothers, this message, my little part. It is an honor for me to greet you and to see you as a part of us. We have pledged allegiance to the leader of the believers and you have pledged allegiance to him. We fought for this and you fought for this. And at the end of the journey there will be paradise, inshallah. Dear brothers, this is a message to the Chechen and Daghestani youth and the youth from all the rest of Vilayat Kavkaz. O, my brother mujahideen, O youth, I call on you to join the caravan of the caliphate. Join the vilayat Kavkaz. Those who have not yet pledged allegiance, I call on you to pledge the leader of the true believers. Hurry to wage jihad! Be a part of this caliphate… Allah called us together so that we woudl be in the same ranks.

I mentioned in my RFE/RL piece that Deso Dogg has been photographed alongside North Caucasian militants before — i.e. Muslim Shishani’s jamaat, Junud al-Sham. Here’s that pic, shared by the group of German media activists who used to be in charge of Muslim’s propaganda (it is likely they had a connection with Cuspert).


* The only glimmer of amusement here is wondering how on earth Deso managed to sit still through the roughly 25 minutes of preaching that was not his in a language I presume he does not speak.

Dagestanis From Jabhat Al-Nusra Hit Back At IS

Earlier this week, I wrote a piece for RFE/RL about how Dagestanis from Jabhat al-Nusra’s Katiba Sayfullah (aka Sayfullakh Shishani’s jamaat, though I rarely hear it called that any more) have pushed back against increased recruitment and propaganda efforts by IS. Continue reading Dagestanis From Jabhat Al-Nusra Hit Back At IS

Akhmad Medinsky Addresses ‘Vilayat Kavkaz’ From Baiji

Akhmad Medinsky, a Dagestani preacher who has joined IS in Iraq, has appeared in a new video address, “Послание Из Бейджи К Львам Халифата В Вилаяте Кавказ” (A Message From Baiji To The Lions Of The Caliphate In Vilayat Kavkaz). Continue reading Akhmad Medinsky Addresses ‘Vilayat Kavkaz’ From Baiji

Why Dagestani Preacher Nadir Abu Khalid’s Joining IS Was A Coup For Abu Jihad

IS’s announcement of “Vilayat Kavkaz,” the Islamic State group’s “province” in the North Caucasus was in large part the result of the rise to power and political machinations of North Caucasian militants not in Chechnya or Dagestan, but in Iraq and Syria. Continue reading Why Dagestani Preacher Nadir Abu Khalid’s Joining IS Was A Coup For Abu Jihad

Umar Shishani To Kebekov: “I Didn’t Have Bay’ah To Umarov When I Came To Syria”

Almost three hours of video footage from 2014 featuring Umar Shishani, IS’s military commander, and his close confidante Abu Jihad has come to light, in which Umar addresses the then-emir of the Caucasus Emirate, Kebekov, and says he did not have a bay’ah to Dokku Umarov when he came to Syria in the autumn of 2012. Continue reading Umar Shishani To Kebekov: “I Didn’t Have Bay’ah To Umarov When I Came To Syria”