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Relying on hundreds of millions of dollars stolen from Mosul banks and the control of oil and gas fields in Syria and Iraq, ISIS has touted its ambition to establish a caliphate stretching from Aleppo in Syria to Diyala in Iraq.With an estimated military force of at least 50,000 fighters in Syria, ISIS already occupies territory from Aleppo, Raqqa, and Deir al-Zor in Syria to the provinces of Salahuddin, Anbar, Nineveh and Diyala in Iraq. In the last six months, 10 foreigners, including three French and two Spanish journalists held in Syria, were released by the group after the payment of a hefty ransom.Administering the six provinces where it has majority control (Raqqa, Deir al-Zor, Salahuddin, Diyala, Anbar and Nineveh) requires enormous funds and the ability to deliver services to a large territory, home to 8 million people (5 million in Iraq and 3 million in Syria).
Challenges, grievances giving Daesh the chance to thrive in Iraq, Syria
Russia’s disinformation changed how we see Syria
Russia’s local and regional approach to Syria
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