A consortium of researchers dedicated to improving the understanding of the human causes and consequences of terrorism

Significant Terrorism Events in the News: August 1 - August 22, 2013

Tunisia: Islamists accept union plan to resolve crisis
Just a few days after agreeing to meet with opposition parties, Tunisia's governing Islamist party, Ennahda, agreed to a transition plan proposed by the country's powerful trade unions. Rached Ghannouchi, the chairman of Ennahda, stated that they accepted the proposal on principle, in order to fully begin negotiations with the opposition parties. Opposition leadership demanded that Ennahda step down, an idea that, until now, the ruling party outright rejected. UGTT trade union federation Secretary General Hussein Abassi acknowledges that the plan requires sacrifices from Ennahda, and that such sacrifices will come with conditions. Abassi plans to present those conditions to the opposition soon. Ennahda's decision to meet with opposition leaders came after a private meeting in Paris between Ghannouchi and Beji Caid Essebsi, a former prime minister and the head of the main opposition party.

Egypt: Younger brother of al-Qaida leader arrested
Mohammed al-Zawahiri, the leader of the ultraconservative Jihadi Salafist group and younger brother of Ayman al-Zawahiri, was arrested at a security checkpoint in Giza on Aug. 17. Mohammed al-Zawahiri became a prominent figure in Egypt post-Mubarak and was an ally of ousted President Mohammed Morsi. Mohammed's son, Abdel Rahman al-Zawahiri, denounced the arrest, saying that his father had not taken part in the widespread protests and riots that have recently rocked the country, and that he has never endorsed attacks against the military. Authorities stated that al-Zawahiri had commanded insurgents in the Sinai Peninsula, but declined to give any further details on the arrest.

Thailand: Two Iranians jailed over bomb plot
Two Iranians have been convicted in a Bangkok court over a failed bomb plot last year that officials believe targeted Israeli diplomats. Saeid Moradi, 39, was sentenced to life in prison for attempting to kill a police officer and for carrying explosives, while Mohammad Kharzei, 43, received a15-year sentence for detonating the explosives. The plot was discovered when explosive devices detonated prematurely, blowing the roof off a house in suburban Bangkok and sending five men fleeing into the streets. Moradi lost his legs when the explosive device he attempted to throw at approaching police instead detonated near him. The explosion came two days after bomb attacks on Israeli diplomats in India and Georgia. Both Moradi and Kharzei denied any involvement in a plot, saying they were unaware that anyone was keeping explosives in their house and their lawyer has indicated that they may appeal the court's decision.