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(The Situation Update Report [SUR] is a near real-time brief of a possible threat or situation being monitored by The Counter Threat Center. The information is accurate at the time of reporting, but may be subject to change.)

Gabriel Helupka Jennifer Loy, Chief Editor

October 15, 2023

Al-Qaeda Central Statement[1]

Current Situation: Al-Qaeda Central released a statement calling on Muslims worldwide to rally behind Hamas and join their “once or twice in a lifetime” jihad to liberate Palestinian land. They advocated that Muslims interact negatively and boycott everything Western and Jewish. Al-Qaeda called on them to provide material and moral support. This includes supplying men, money, food, and weapons. They also asked jihadists to attack Western and Jewish assets. The statement specifies military, security, and economic institutions. Al-Qaeda extends its call to target Christians, claiming they torment Muslims and suggest that Muslims take action to kill, capture, and torture them.[2]

Day/Time of event: October 13, 2023

What is the current threat:

  • Al-Qaeda’s call will likely inspire sympathizers to carry out attacks against Western and Jewish targets, very likely exploiting constant media attention around the Israel-Hamas war. Al-Qaeda attacks will likely claim to be revenge for Muslims suffering from the war, likely seeking to avenge them. Western embassies, synagogues, and Christian holy sites are almost certainly at the highest risk.

  • Al-Qaeda is very likely capitalizing on Muslim anger over the conflict, likely attempting to extend its fight against Israel and inspire killings of Jewish individuals. The group’s affiliates will very likely organize mass pro-Palestinian protests in stronghold areas, likely attempting to garner local public support and increase recruitment.

  • Western countries will very likely raise terrorist threat levels in response to growing threats, almost certainly increasing law enforcement presence around holy sites and popular public venues. The growing number of threats from Islamist terrorist groups and the current unpredictability of attacks will very likely overwhelm preventative counterterrorism capabilities. This will very likely result in increased Western counterterrorism cooperation, likely sharing intelligence and logistical capabilities.

Who will it directly impact:

  • Jewish communities

  • Palestinian communities

  • Christian communities

  • Muslim communities

  • Religious and cultural site attendees


[1] CTG Threat Hunter 38 via ChirpWire

[2] Ibid



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