CTP’s Threat Update series seeks to provide you with a weekly analysis and assessment of the al Qaeda network and Iran
Below are the takeaways from the week:
An Israeli-Russian agreement to withdraw Iranian and Iranian-backed forces from southwestern Syria likely received Tehran’s undisclosed approval. Iran aims to appease European and U.S. concerns over Iran’s destabilizing regional behaviors during ongoing nuclear deal negotiations. A Russian official confirmed the Russo-Israeli agreement on June 1 after alleged “indirect negotiations” between Iranian and Israeli officials in late May over the presence of Iranian forces in southern Syria near the Israeli border.
Read the Critical Threats Project and the Institute for the Study of War’s “Intelligence Estimate and Forecast: The Syrian Theatre” to learn more about Iranian ambitions in Syria.
The UN is attempting to prevent a military confrontation over Yemen’s al Hudaydah port. Emirati-backed forces advanced rapidly north along Yemen’s Red Sea coast, prompting the UN Special Envoy to Yemen to reinvigorate a plan for the UN to administer the port. Al Houthi officials rejected the plan under the previous envoy in 2017 but may be willing to negotiate due to pressure from the Emirati-backed offensive. Emirati-backed Yemeni forces will likely attempt to seize the port if UN-led negotiations are unsuccessful.
Read Maher Farrukh’s and Katherine Zimmerman’s 2018 Red Sea Coast Offensive for a map and analysis of the offensive.