Animesh Roul is the executive director of the New Delhi-based policy research group Society for the Study of Peace and Conflict. He specializes in counterterrorism, radical Islam, terror financing, and armed conflict and violence in South Asia. Mr. Roul has written extensively on these subject areas, being published in edited books, journals, and policy magazines. He co-authored a book on India’s indigenous terror group Indian Mujahideen (Springer, 2013). He is regularly cited in the Washington Post, Reuters, Wall Street Journal and Hindustan Times among others. He regularly contributes to The Jamestown Foundation’s Terrorism Monitor and Militant Leadership Monitor.
Since the death of firebrand Taliban leader Mullah Fazlullah in June 2018, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has witnessed a substantial decline in stature and firepower due to a leadership crisis, inherent
In early May 2020, the pro-Islamic State (IS) media center Haqqu released a documentary on the life of the slain Maldivian jihadist Ahmad Nishwan. The biographical sketch on Nishwan, which
Pakistan has recently faced a renewed ethno-separatist militant surge targeting its financial and energy infrastructure. Four recent attacks indicate a resurgence within the multiple secessionist groups fighting for Baluchistan independence.
Islamic State-Khorasan (IS-K) has dominated the jihadist landscape of Afghanistan for the past several years while sharing turf with the powerful Taliban. It has suffered several significant setbacks in recent
Following the death of al-Qaeda in Indian Subcontinent’s (AQIS) founding leader Asim Umar and several of his associates in September 2019 in Afghanistan, it was believed that the youngest franchise
Almost six years after al-Qaeda in Indian Subcontinent’s (AQIS) formation as the regional subsidiary of the infamous transnational jihadist group, the organization is reportedly shifting its violent campaign to Kashmir
In August 2013, a Bangladeshi court in Barguna district jailed several members of the extremist outfit Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT), including its spiritual leader Mufti Jasimuddin Rahmani, for subversive activities
The image of the Maldives as a tropical paradise received a significant jolt on February 4, when three foreign nationals—two Chinese and one Australian—were stabbed and injured by Islamist militants
In late November 2019, al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) issued a message on its digital platforms, both through Telegram messaging channel and through al-Qaeda’s official al-Sahab web portal, urging
Following a notable lull in militant activity, Pakistan is now facing a unique militant escalation targeted against its security forces in the North Waziristan area and bordering regions. Despite the
In a significant turn of events, on October 23 Maldivian security agencies arrested Mohamad Ameen, an Islamist militant recruiter associated with Islamic State (IS). His arrest came around a month
Bangladesh’s Islamist landscape unexpectedly expanded with a reported resurgence of al-Qaeda-linked Harkat-ul Jihad al-Islami-Bangladesh (HUJI-B—Movement of Islamic Holy War-Bangladesh) terrorist group, which has been lying dormant for over a decade.
On August 23, the Sri Lankan government ended a four-month-long state of emergency that was declared after multiple suicide bombings inspired by the Islamic State (IS) rocked the South Asian nation
On July 31, news of Hamza bin Laden’s death surfaced with only partial comment from U.S. intelligence officials and al-Qaeda media sources (Dawn [Karachi], August 1). The original report citing
On June 12, motorcycle-borne militants in Jammu and Kashmir’s Anantnag district killed five Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel. Kashmir-based Al-Umar-Mujahideen (AuM), a largely inactive terrorist group, has claimed responsibility
On July 9, al-Qaeda's Emir Ayman al- Zawahiri incited violence against India and Pakistan by vehemently criticizing these neighboring countries for the plight of Muslims in Kashmir. Zawahiri’s video message
Following the April 21 Easter Sunday attacks on churches and hotels in Sri Lanka that killed over 250 people and injured many more, the Sri Lankan authorities and a devastated
China is increasingly facing transnational jihadist threats as a result of the long-standing plight of its ethnic Uighur Muslim citizens, who are mostly concentrated in the country’s northwestern region of
Jamestown Analyst Animesh Roul was quoted by the Financial Times, in a recent article on the Easter Day terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka. Roul is quoted as saying the problems
The Maldives, the smallest nation in South Asia, has witnessed it all in the last several years amid periodic political instabilty: Islamic radicalization, forced disappearances, foreign fighters, and crackdowns on
Maulana Masood Azhar, the founding leader of Jaish-e-Muhammad (Army of Muhammad—JeM), a Pakistan-based terrorist group blamed for violence against India over the past two decades—including the latest vehicle-borne improvised explosive
Despite massive territorial losses and military setbacks in the Middle East, the violent ideals espoused by Islamic State (IS) remain resilient and seem to be resonating in the hearts and
After almost nine years of incarceration in a Pakistani jail, Abdul Ghani Baradar Akhund (Akhund being an honorific for Islamic clerics and Baradar being a name fondly given to Abdul
Bangladesh’s most lethal home-grown militant organization, Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB)—which has multiple ideological and operational factions, including the Islamic State (IS)-inspired neo-JMB and al-Qaeda linked core Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen (JM)—has gained notoriety over
The Maldivian government has engaged in an effort to restrain radicalized youths from joining jihadists groups in Syria and Iraq. Despite these efforts, the total number of Maldivians fighting in
Hafiz Mohammed Saeed, the firebrand founder of the terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and its charity front Jamaat ud Dawa (JuD), remains free in Pakistan. Legendary for his anti-Western and anti-India
A failed bomb plot that appeared to target the Tibetan Buddhist spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, as he visited a pilgrimage site in Bihar, India, has been blamed on the
The Taliban’s notorious spring offensive, an annual war ritual launched this year on April 25, has resulted in a series of violent strikes across Afghanistan, demonstrating once again the resilience
Once an infamous militant leader who unleashed a reign of terror in India’s Jammu and Kashmir in the early 1990s, Maulana Fazlur Rehman Khalil looks poised for an image makeover.
Of late, al-Qaeda's South Asia branch has been proactive and forceful in its campaign against India and its neighbors. A “code of conduct,” released by the group in June 2017,
In mid-August 2015, the voice of Hamza Bin Laden, the so-called crown prince of jihad, reached al-Qaeda’s foot soldiers and sympathizers worldwide for the first time through an audio message.
Despite relentless anti-terror drives aimed at neutralizing the resurgence of Islamic militants, Bangladeshi authorities are still struggling to contain the surge of Islamist militancy that has sprung up in the
Wilayat-e-Khorasan, the Islamic State (IS) affiliate in the borderlands of Afghanistan and Pakistan, is one of the terrorist group’s strongest franchises. Bolstered by defections from the Taliban and boosted further
Karen Aisha Hamidon (a.k.a. Karen Aisha al-Muslimah) was arrested on October 11, 2017, by the Philippines’ National Bureau of Investigation (Counterterrorism Division) in Taguig City for luring foreign and local
The announcement of the death the Taliban movement’s founding leader, Mullah Muhammad Omar, in July 2015, almost two years after his actual demise, set off a succession battle within the
On August 7, 2017, Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, the chief of Pakistan’s banned Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) and Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist groups, launched a political party. The Milli Muslim League (MML) has yet to
Often labeled as a firebrand female Islamist by the media outlets in India and Pakistan, Asiya Andrabi, the founding leader of the now proscribed Kashmiri separatist women’s organization Dukhtaran-e-Milat (DeM,
Al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS), the official South Asian branch of the transnational al-Qaeda network, has spread its tentacles in the region beyond its strongholds. Beyond Afghanistan, Pakistan and
As Bangladesh’s security forces unleashed a fresh anti-terror operation, operation “Tepid Punch,” targeting militant safe havens in the country in early July, new signs of Islamic State’s (IS) shadowy presence
On July 3, Jamestown Analyst Animesh Roul was quoted by the Diplomat on the Maldives response to rising tensions between Qatar and the other Gulf States.
Zakir Rashid Bhat (a.k.a. Zakir Musa), a former Hizb-ul Mujahideen (HuM, Party of Holy Warriors) commander, has been in the news lately for virtually redefining the long-standing Kashmir militant movement.
India first woke up to the emerging threat of Islamic State (IS) on its soil in May 2014, when four engineering students from Kalyan, Maharashtra, joined the group. In the
The Islamic State’s Khorasan (IS-K) group in Afghanistan suffered a major setback in late April 2017 when a joint U.S. and Afghan military raid killed Sheikh Abdul Haseeb Logari, the
Myanmar’s beleaguered Rakhine state has witnessed a series of violent incidents since last October following surprise armed raids by a group of Rohingya Islamist militants. The raids, which targeted security
Recent militant violence targeted at Myanmar’s border guard police in Rakhine State, which borders Bangladesh on Myanmar’s coast, has seen the emergence of what appears to be a new Islamist
With a bounty of 20 lakh BDT (approximately $25,000) on his head, Syed Mohammad Ziaul Haque is one of the most notorious militant fugitives in Bangladesh. Haque has masterminded subversive
Since its formation nearly two years ago, Islamic State (IS) in Afghanistan, known as IS Khorasan, has struggled to maintain a foothold in an ever-competitive jihadist landscape. Its disregard for
On October 25, Jamestown analyst was quoted in a The Wall Street Journal article on recent terrorist attacks in Pakistan. Mr. Roul explained developments with Islamic State in Afghanistan and
Following the announcement of Mullah Muhammad Omar’s death in July 2015, the defunct Taliban-led Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s reign rested with his powerful deputy, Mullah Akhtar Mansour, amid internal conflict
Jamaat-ul-Ahrar (JuA), once a disgruntled breakaway faction of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), has been behind a series of deadly attacks across Pakistan since March 2016, apparently contradicting the Pakistani Army’s claim
Animesh Roul The Islamic State’s (IS) announcement of a “Bengal unit” in its propaganda magazine Dabiq (issue No 12) in November 2015 left the entire Indian subcontinent flummoxed. That issue
Animesh Roul Pakistan based Jamaat-ud Dawa (JuD), the internationally proscribed Islamic socio-political front of the terrorist group Lashkar-e Taiba (LeT), often blends violence with humanitarian activities in order to garner
After months denying the existence of transnational jihadist groups on its soil in the face of a violent campaign against secular and progressive forces, Bangladeshi authorities appear to have woken
A series of arrests this year in India has highlighted how India has been unable to escape its overtures as Islamic State (IS) continues its attempts to expand its geographical
Animesh Roul In late January 2016, India’s elite anti-terrorism agency, the National Investigating Agency (NIA), stumbled on an unknown extremist network, the Junood al-Khilafa-e-Hind (JKH), known to be sympathetic to
It is increasingly evident that each time the relations between India and Pakistan improve, India-focused jihadist groups from across the Pakistani border attempt to disrupt it with attacks in the
Hizbul Mujahideen’s (HM) newly recruited commander, Burhan-ud-Din Muzaffar Wani, has taken Kashmir’s militant landscape by storm by using his social media skills and guns. One of his recent photographs featured
In recent months, there has been growing evidence of actual and attempted outreach by the Islamic State into Sri Lanka, presently struggling to recover from a three-decade long conflict between
Animesh Roul's recent article on the Islamic State's expansion into Bangladesh was cited by al-Jazeera in an article on the recent shooting of an Italian aid worker in Dhaka.
Animesh Roul, a longtime Jamestown contributor, was interviewed by One India about his recent article in Terrorism Monitor on the threat of the Islamic State toward India.
Unlike the copybook Islamic jihadists or extremist militant ideologues of the Indian Subcontinent, Shafiur Rahman Farabi is an over ground, overt Islamist who is engaged in an online pro-Islamist campaign
One of the first indications of the Islamic State’s potential appeal in India occurred in late 2014, when Aarif Majeed, a youth from the state of Maharashtra, returned to the
In Pakistan’s dangerously diverse universe of Islamic extremism, the name Jundullah (also Jundallah) and this militant group’s notorious commander-spokesperson Ahmed Marwat (a.k.a. Ahmedullah or Fahad Marwat) are synonymous with violence
A seemingly organized sectarian violence against Pakistan’s beleaguered minority Shi’a community has plumbed new depths in recent months with a series of bombings of Shi’a worshipping places and targeted killings
Amid a series of government denials from Pakistan and Afghanistan regarding the presence of the Islamic State militant group in these countries and its ongoing outreach activities there, its expansion
Animesh Roul, a South Asia analyst for Jamestown, was quoted by the New Indian Express on the Islamic State's influence in Bangladesh.
In January 2015, the Islamic State’s chief spokesperson, Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, announced the establishment of Wilayat Khurasan, covering a geographical region that roughly includes Afghanistan, Pakistan and parts of Central
Growing evidence suggests that the influence of the Islamic State organization has reached the South Asian, Muslim-majority country of Bangladesh. The country has long been home to small, but significant,
The Islamic State, established by the self-proclaimed Caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in June, has received unprecedented support from the Islamic world, spanning from the Middle East to the far corners
The Maldives, the Muslim-majority archipelago country in the Indian Ocean, is going through a tumultuous time, facing increasing Islamist activities at home, an exodus of radicalized youth to join the
Following years of futile attempts and intermittent incitements to South Asia’s teeming Muslim communities, the transnational terrorist group al-Qaeda finally formalized its operational presence in the region on September 3,
Animesh Roul discussed the recent Burdwan bombing in India and its connection with Bangladeshi terrorist group Jamaat-ul Mujahideen.
India’s intelligence agencies have been investigating an espionage network reportedly run by Pakistan’s external intelligence agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), from Sri Lankan soil. The ISI uses legitimate government structures
Animesh Roul and his recent article for Terrorism Monitor were cited in an article by India Today about the Islamic State (formerly ISIS) and its recruitment efforts in India.
Pakistani militant commander Haroon Khan, better known as Mast Gul in the Indian subcontinent, has reemerged after a hibernation, perpetrating a string of terrorist attacks inside Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province
Animesh Roul was quoted in an article on a newly released documentary on women in India.
Transnational Islamist terrorist groups have recently made sporadic attempts to lure India’s Muslim population towards global jihad, frequently urging them to fight the democratically elected secular government. India-specific incitements have
Animesh Roul discussed the new Modi government in India and their approach to terrorism.
Of late, Bangladesh has witnessed a renewed surge of Islamic radicalism, which has led to intermittent confrontations between liberal-progressive forces and Islamic hardliners. The Shahabag protests of early 2013 remain
Syed Salahuddin (a.k.a. Muhammad Yusuf Saha), heads the most dreaded Kashmir-centric militant organization, Hizbul Mujahideen (HM – Party of Holy Warriors). He has led a proxy war against India since
After pursuing a cross-border money laundering case for several years, Indian investigative agencies have zeroed in on the leadership of the Pakistan-based Hizbul Mujahideen (HM) and its front charity organization
Widespread violence, marked by protest rallies, hartals (general shutdowns), group clashes and bombings have led to massive confrontations between secular and Islamist forces in Bangladesh over the last year. Now,
Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) chief Hakimullah Mahsud was killed by a predator strike on November 1 in Pakistan's North Waziristan region. After a brief tug of war for leadership, the Pakistani
A wave of violent clashes that swept Myanmar’s restive Rakhine State (formerly known as Arakan) in late September left at least five Muslims dead and many members of their community
Maulana Masood Azhar is one of the most dreaded Pakistani jihad leaders within the Indian political and security establishments. Formerly associated with the Harkat troika (Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami [HujI], Harkat-ul-Mujahideen [HuM], Harkat-ul-Ansar
Animesh Roul was quoted by International Business Times in an article titled "Balochistan: Pakistan’s ‘Dirty War’ In Its Poorest, Most Lawless, But Resource-Rich Province."
With the change in the political guard in Pakistan following the May 11 general election, apprehensions have grown in India regarding the strategy of the newly-crowned government of Prime Minister
Bangladesh, the world’s fourth largest Muslim country, has recently experienced an intense cycle of massive protest rallies marked by violent confrontations between moderate secularists and Islamic radical forces. The spark
Since the beginning of the New Year, fears of a dangerous border conflict have returned to haunt India and Pakistan as a spate of ceasefire violations and terrorist incursions continue
The security situation in the Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) state of India has reached a new low in the past few months as militant organizations backed by Islamabad have stepped
Jamestown Analyst Animesh Roul was interviewed by Rediff News about the Haqqani Network and the growing threat of the Indian Mujahideen.
The Haqqani Network (HN) has recently been receiving global attention for its active support to militant movements in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Tagged often as the “veritable arm” of Pakistan’s intelligence
For over a year, India has been struggling to recuperate from the November 2008 terrorist attacks on the commercial capital Mumbai. In February 2010, the lull was interrupted by a
At a time when questions are being raised about Saudi Arabia’s tacit support for the global Salafist movement, recent developments have displayed the Kingdom’s new-found seriousness in fighting terrorism, especially
Known for his Saudi Salafist links, idolization of Osama bin Laden and for keeping close liaisons with Mullah Omar and other Taliban leaders in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region, Abdur Rahman Makki
Outside the Indian subcontinent not much was known about the most prolific militant commander of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Zaki-ur Rahman Lakhvi, until the United States Treasury announced on May 27, 2008
Often tagged as the second most lethal India-centric terror group based in the Pakistani Punjab, Jaish-e-Muhammad (Army of [the Prophet] Muhammad - JeM) is once again raising its head under
Bangladesh’s Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) forces, the country’s elite anti-terror police, achieved a much awaited breakthrough barely within a week’s time in late April this year, when they apprehended three
Executive Summary:In the weeks following the July 13 bomb explosions in Mumbai, responsibility for the attacks has yet to be determined. Investigative agencies have not yet pinpointed a suspect nor
Despite the Pakistan government’s proscription, the Islamic charity Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) has stepped up its overt anti-Indian and anti-Western rhetoric, holding mass protest rallies across Pakistan as its leaders continue to
The secret U.S. operation in Pakistan’s garrison city of Abbottabad in early May has exposed Pakistan’s terror underbelly. The operation that resulted in the death of Osama bin Laden triggered
In troubled Pakistan, sacred spaces such as Sufi shrines have increasingly been the target of bloody attacks by Taliban and al-Qaeda militants. The Taliban-Deobandi school of Islam perceives Sufi practices
The ongoing anti-Taliban offensive in Pakistan’s Mohmand Agency has triggered a humanitarian emergency in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) as well as the prompting of Taliban militants to carry
Mohammed Azam Cheema (a.k.a. Baba/Babaji) is widely regarded as the “number three” of Lashkar-e-Taiba’s (LeT) anti-Indian operations. Azam Cheema has masterminded several high-profile attacks against India over the years from
The outgoing chief of the Tripura state police, Pranay Sahay, informed the public during a briefing on October 11 that the top militants of the state are still operating from
Recent developments in three of India’s neighbors have demonstrated the expanding regional presence, reach and influence of the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) organization. Going well beyond its Kashmir roots, reports suggest
A recent spurt in sectarian attacks in Pakistan has been blamed on a lethal but lesser known group affiliated with Taliban and al-Qaeda elements: the Ghazi Abdul Rashid Shaheed Brigade,
Figured at number three in Forbes’s most wanted fugitive list in 2010—and ranked at number 50 in Forbes’ list of “The World's Most Powerful People” in 2009—Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar remains
India, one of the most terrorism-troubled countries in the world, is finally pursuing the idea of proscribing nearly 100 terrorist entities, both regional and international. The proscription will exist in
Formed in 1984, the Harkat-ul-Jihad al-Islami (HuJI – Movement of Islamic Holy War) has fought Soviets in Afghanistan and Indians in Kashmir before expanding to Bangladesh. From its focused beginnings,
Maldivian President Mohammed Nasheed admitted in October, 2009 that hundreds of Maldivian Muslims had been recruited by Pakistan-based terrorist groups and are presently fighting against government forces in Pakistan. 
Following a series of urban terror attacks in 2008, including the three-day long Mumbai siege, terrorist groups maintained a low profile throughout 2009. Jihadi groups like Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami (HuJI)
The two day visit of American Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) officials on December 8 to brainstorm with their Indian counterparts in the newly established National Investigation Agency (NIA) and
Suicide terrorism has taken a lethal turn in Pakistan recently with the widespread use of vehicle bombs, known to security services as Vehicle Borne Improvised Explosive Devices (VBIED). These suicide
After a relatively long period of calm, Islamist militancy in Bangladesh is showing new signs of life, even in the face of continuous crackdowns on terrorist infrastructure and activity by
An impending threat from the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terrorist group has prompted security establishments to raise an alert along India’s western sea-coast. According to intelligence sources, the LeT’s marine wing
For India’s military, the Taliban is a threat looming large on the horizon. The perception of the Taliban making inroads to India has increased since December 2008, when Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan
The Taliban resurgence in Pakistan’s lawless provinces and its unhindered march towards the heartland of the restive country is fueled by an ever increasing economic life-line. Unlike Afghanistan’s Taliban, which
After lying low for a few months following the November 2008 Mumbai carnage and the subsequent crackdown on its leadership and camps in Pakistan, Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) has once again resumed
Unknown before 2008, the Indian Mujahedeen (IM) has emerged as a well-organized jihadi terrorist group in India, claiming responsibility for a number of terror attacks perpetrated in various urban centers
In a surprising shift of tactics, the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terrorist organization has toned down its violent Kashmir-centric agenda, claiming it will pursue a peaceful settlement of the Kashmir problem.
India’s northeastern state of Assam has endured a series of terrorist incidents, including bomb blasts, attacks on trains, and a fierce gun fight between security forces and terrorists, all within
Two weeks after the deadly Mumbai terrorist incidents which claimed 164 lives, including security forces personnel and foreign nationals, Indian investigating agencies have been struggling to unearth a terror trail
The security situation in India’s troubled northeast region plumbed new depths in October when two major terror incidents struck Manipur and Assam states. On October 21, nearly 17 people were
The arrests of three Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) operatives on March 14 in Rangpur and their subsequent interrogations revealed the organization's plan to conduct new terrorist attacks in Bangladesh. The
Reports of suspected al-Qaeda terrorists infiltrating southern India to perpetrate major attacks on airports in Tamil Nadu and Kerala in early November propelled India's security and intelligence establishments into a
As the Mumbai police continue to hunt down the suspects of the July 11 train blasts, a lesser-known militant outfit, Lashkar-e-Qahar (LeQ), has claimed responsibility for the coordinated terrorist attacks
The following article is the second and final part of a series on sectarian organizations in Pakistan linked with international terrorism. The first part, Sipah-e-Sahaba: Fomenting Sectarian Violence in Pakistan,
Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (Corp of the Prophet's Companions), a militant Islamist organization and the largest sectarian outfit in the country, was outlawed by President Pervez Musharraf on January 12, 2002 for
Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (Corp of the Prophet's Companions), a militant Islamist organization and the largest sectarian outfit in the country, was outlawed by President Pervez Musharraf on January 12, 2002 for