Iraq's Qaeda pledges support to Zawahri

2011-05-09 21:19

Baghdad - An al-Qaeda-linked militant group in Iraq pledged support to the organisation's second-in-command, Ayman al-Zawahri, and vowed more revenge attacks for the death of Osama bin Laden at the hands of US forces in Pakistan.

In a statement posted on an Islamist website forum on Monday, the caliph of the Islamic State of Iraq (ISC), Abu Baker al-Baghdadi al-Husseini al-Qurashi, mourned bin Laden's death.

"I tell our brothers in the al-Qaeda organisation and on the top of them Sheikh Mujahid Ayman al-Zawahri ... be merry, you have faithful men in the Islamic State of Iraq who are following the right path and will not quit or be forced out," he said in the statement.

"I swear by God, blood for blood and destruction for destruction," he said in a clear reference to revenge attacks for bin Laden's death.

Zawahri, an Egyptian-born doctor who met bin Laden in the mid-1980s when both were in Pakistan to support guerrillas fighting the Soviets in Afghanistan, has long been considered al-Qaeda's deputy leader.

ISI is believed by intelligence analysts to have been created by al-Qaeda in Iraq as a local umbrella group for insurgent organisations.

Iraq's army and police have been on high alert for revenge attacks since bin Laden's killing by US commandos in Pakistan.

Iraq became an important battlefield for al-Qaeda after the US-led invasion that ousted Saddam Hussein.

Security officials have said bin Laden's death earlier this month may have little practical impact on al-Qaeda in Iraq, a weakened but still deadly Islamist insurgency that could launch strikes for the next decade.

Al-Qaeda in Iraq may seek immediate revenge for the killing of the world's most wanted man but in the long run probably will be more a thorn in the Iraqi government's side than a destabilising force, security officials said.

On Thursday, a car bomber killed more than 20 people and wounded 80 at a police building in the mainly Shi'ite city of Hilla.

  • slg - 2011-05-09 21:28

    There's little doubt thousands of innocent civilians will be targeted, and will probably be maimed or die. Al-Quaeda has been doing this for decades, in an attempt to terrorize people into allowing them to lead them to the not-so-promised land of oppression. More black (American built) SUV's for the leaders.

  • Mike - 2011-05-09 22:50

    Malema and Zuma, twin presidents of South Africa. If the two of you will sing a duet on international television insulting the Al-qaeda, I will give you all my land for free! There is only one condition, you can only claim my land 3 months after the broadcast and it must be received by you in person. Bye-bye

      Rismart - 2011-05-10 00:33

      Zuma must stop involving himself into the Al-Qaeda issue coz we both know that the american embassy in pretoria ias between the national roads and anything can happen.Infact its easy for them to get into the country coz 60% of business in pretoria is run by the islamics. Our SANDF&SAPS structure is not that strong coz after matric,pupils chose those career paths because its very hard to get another job and they have no choice but to join the SAPS&SANDF,that is why our security structure is so weak.

      slg - 2011-05-10 01:20

      Rismart, would you clarify what you mean here?

  • slg - 2011-05-10 06:29

    Zahwari would be a great choice as the new leader of Al-Quaeda. He is a divisive figure within the organization and ran it into the ground in Egypt.

  • Ditaba - 2011-05-10 14:27

    to all commentors on this story. all of you have common point, you believe that the show or use of might/killing/bombing results in you being right. the fantacy of winning through killing has never ever being realised. Do you all want to kill or die, for who's peace sake?

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