ISIS Allies Carving Out Territory in Eastern Libya

Jaish al-Islam Calls on Derna Locals to Back ISIS

Would-be ISIS affiliate the Jaish al-Islam has been carving out a territory of its own along the eastern Libyan coast over the past few weeks, and admonishing residents of their largest city, Derna, to throw their weight behind the ISIS Caliphate.

Libya is falling apart with a collection of rival militias both Islamist and secular taking over various cities and regions, and the government itself controlling little more than a hotel at the town of Tobruk.

Most of the cities are de facto independent entities at this point, and as the government pushes for Western intervention, many of those factions are likely to look to affiliate themselves with regional organizations like ISIS.

No group is bigger or more successful in this regard than ISIS, and while it might make groups like Jaish al-Islam more likely targets, it also makes them much, much higher profile than their comparatively small territory would otherwise be.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.