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Report Finds Spike in Global IS Attacks

FILE - Young men chant pro-Islamic State slogans as they wave the group's flags in Mosul, Iraq.

Worldwide attacks by the Islamic State group spiked more than 40 percent per day in the third quarter, according to a new report by the IHS Jane's global defense publication.

The study, released Thursday, recorded 1,086 Islamic State attacks globally between July and September. That comes out to nearly 12 attacks per day, a 42 percent increase from the previous quarter.

The report covered activity within countries where Islamic State claims territory, including not only its main heartland in Syria and Iraq, but also Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, the North Caucasus and Algeria.

Several localized Islamist extremist groups in those countries, such as Boko Haram in Nigeria, have claimed allegiance to the Islamic State group, though it is not clear how close the organizations are coordinating with IS' leadership core.

Areas of Islamic State control or support in Syria and Iraq
Areas of Islamic State control or support in Syria and Iraq

Targeted airstrikes

Islamic State extremists in Syria and Iraq have been the target of months of airstrikes by a U.S.-led coalition and, to a lesser extent, by a separate Russian campaign of bombing raids that recently began.

Although the report raises questions about whether those airstrikes are having any significant effect on the Islamic State, it does suggest the group's territorial expansion is being slowed.

Over the past three months, IS saw "very little in the way of nominal territorial expansion," according to IHS Jane's. Instead, the group "maintained its strategy of expanding and consolidating local territorial control within its existing structure of provinces," it said.

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