Egypt’s main terror group supports IS

Updated 10 November 2014
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Egypt’s main terror group supports IS

CAIRO: Egypt’s deadliest militant group, Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis, pledged its allegiance to the Islamic State organization in Iraq and Syria, in a recording posted on its Twitter account on Monday.
The announcement is the most significant pledge of support for IS in the region outside Iraq and Syria, suggesting its influence over militant groups is overshadowing its once dominant Al-Qaeda rivals.
Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis has waged an insurgency from its Sinai Peninsula stronghold that has killed scores of policemen and soldiers.
It was not immediately clear whether Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis’s pledge would mean a shift in tactics to attack Western targets in Egypt, as demanded by IS.
The group has so far focused its attacks on security forces, and once bombed a tourist bus on the border with Israel, killing three South Koreans. “We announce our pledge of allegiance to the caliph Ibrahim Ibn Awad... to listen and obey,” the audio recording said, referring to IS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi. “We call on all Muslims everywhere to pledge allegiance to the caliph and support him,” the recording said.
The group had previously expressed support for IS but stopped short of pledging its allegiance before Monday, even denying it last week. “What are you waiting for after your honor has been violated and your blood spilled... by this stupid tyrant and his soldiers,” it said.
Interior ministry spokesman Hany Abdel Latif told AFP the announcement would make no difference to Egypt’s fight against the militants. “They are just different names for the same terrorists,” he said.


Iraq must not be dragged into another regional war: president

Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May shakes hands with Iraq’s President Barham Salih in London, Britain June 25, 2019. (The Presidency of the Republic of Iraq Office/Reuters)
Updated 30 min 29 sec ago
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Iraq must not be dragged into another regional war: president

  • ‘We cannot afford our country to be dragged into conflict’
  • Saleh said Baghdad’s priority was ‘stability’

LONDON: Iraqi President Barham Salih said Wednesday his country must not be dragged into another conflict in the Middle East, as tensions rise over its neighbor Iran.
“We have had four decades of challenge and turmoil. We do not want to be embroiled in another war,” he said at Chatham House, the Royal Institute of International Affairs think-tank in London.
“We cannot afford our country to be dragged into conflict.”
With tensions high between Iran and the United States, Salih insisted his country would not become “a staging post for belligerents.”
“We are asking everybody to cool it down... enough is enough,” he said.
“We do not want to be a victim of a conflict in Middle East. We have not finished the last one,” the Iraqi president added, referring to the US-led war on terror and battle against Daesh.
“It is in our national interests to have good relationship with Iran,” he said, whilst adding: “The US is a very important partner for Iraq.”
Salih, who took office in October, said Baghdad’s priority was “stability.”
“We need to transform Iraq from a zone of regional and proxy conflict into a zone of trade, infrastructure development, and jobs and a future for young people,” the 58-year-old said.
Salih visited British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday for talks on security cooperation and nation-building.
May said Britain “stood ready to provide further support” to the Iraqi and Kurdish security forces, her Downing Street office said.