ISIS to Declare ‘Emirate’ in Lebanon

Move Will Underscore Regional Aspirations

Lebanese security sources believe that ISIS is on the verge of declaring an “Islamic emirate” in an attempt to make clear their intention to expand their sway across the region.

ISIS has relatively little territory inside Lebanon, though they and al-Qaeda have been cooperating in clashes with the Lebanese military along the border with Syria off-and-on for months.

The declaration of an “emirate” is less about the actual control of the territory than about the internal command decision, as such a move would come with ISIS declaring some commander as the “emir” on the nation, whose job would be to lead the attempted takeover.

ISIS has been attempting to use its influence to fuel sectarian unrest inside Lebanon, and has had considerable success doing so in the northern city of Tripoli, where fighting between the city’s Sunni population and its Alawite population continues to pop up every few weeks.

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.