Al-Qaeda terror call ‘aimed at diverting attention from infighting’

Above, a still image of Al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri in this video released on October 11, 2011. (IntelCenter/AFP)
Updated 09 April 2019
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Al-Qaeda terror call ‘aimed at diverting attention from infighting’

  • The terrorist organization also slammed international treaties relating to women and denounced what it described as the double-edged politics of the West on human rights

CAIRO: The terror group Al-Qaeda has called on all Muslims to commit murder as a matter of duty.

In an article published by the extremist organization’s media arm, identifies the “idiots of the age” (America) and US allies as legitimate targets, Egypt’s Dar Al-Ifta said in a statement on Sunday.

Analysts, however, believe the kill directive is not only a crude attempt to draw world attention back to Al-Qaeda following the breakdown of Daesh, but also a smokescreen to divert from infighting among the group’s leadership. In its call to arms, published by Al-Sahab Foundation for Islamic Media Publication, Al-Qaeda said it did not countenance the shedding of Muslim blood but Dar Al-Ifta said this was just a ploy by the organization to try and gain popularity.

Dar Al-Ifta noted that the first edition of the new publication contained two broad articles about the principles of upbringing in societies and families which attacked the ways of the contemporary family hierarchy, especially in relation to the role of women.

The terrorist organization also slammed international treaties relating to women and denounced what it described as the double-edged politics of the West on human rights.

Alaa Azmy, a journalist and expert in extremist movements, said that the timing of the publication was “confusing and calls for many questions.”

He told Arab News: “Perhaps Al-Qaeda is attempting to restore its status and fill the void left behind after Daesh, especially in the media.”

He said that Al-Qaeda’s media arm had been inactive for years, and the group was struggling with internal conflicts, particularly the appointment of Hamza bin Laden as a leader of the group and the move to topple historical head Ayman Al-Zawahiri.

The latest issue of the new Al-Qaeda publication does attempt to address the internal crisis by warning of the dangers of infighting and calling for obedience to the group’s leadership.

In his opening statement to supporters, Al-Zawahiri said: “If we claim to defend the honor of Muslims, then we should not assault it. Nor should we assault our Muslim Jihadi brothers.” He added: “If we call for unity, we should not rebel against our emirs. And if we call for obedience, we should set an example for it.”

Maher Farghaly, a researcher, told Arab News that the magazine articles highlighted the reality of the crisis facing the group and also exposed Al-Zawahiri’s fear of being toppled. It had therefore resorted to using quotes and articles of group founders such as Osama bin Laden and Abdullah Azzam, Farghaly said.

The analyst added that Al-Qaeda was trying to garner Arab and international attention by promoting its name again.

“Coordinating international and regional efforts to combat terrorism and terrorist groups is crucial,” Farghaly added.


Council of Arab Interior Ministers calls for cooperation to alleviate suffering of terrorism victims

Updated 23 April 2019
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Council of Arab Interior Ministers calls for cooperation to alleviate suffering of terrorism victims

  • Mohammed bin Ali Koman says the situation requires the cooperation of all to alleviate the suffering of the victims and their families
  • He was commemorating Arab Day to raise awareness of the pain of victims of terrorist acts

TUNIS: Not only does the harm caused by terrorist crimes affect innocent victims, it also leaves their families and communities with psychological and social pain, the Secretary-General of the Council of Arab Ministers of the Interior has said.

This situation requires the cooperation of all to alleviate the suffering of the victims and their families and help them overcome their predicament, Dr. Mohammed bin Ali Koman said.

Koman was commemorating Arab Day to raise awareness of the pain of victims of terrorist acts, held every year on April 22 by the General Secretariat of the Council of Arab Interior Ministers, member states and the League of Arab States.

“Today is an opportunity to raise awareness of the pain and tragedies of victims of terrorist attacks and encourage all initiatives undertaken by official bodies and civil society organizations to alleviate their suffering,” he said.

“The effects of terrorist crimes have exceeded aggression against human lives and property to psychological and social impacts as well as affecting families,” he said.

“Terrorist crimes result in a continuous bleeding to the heart of affected communities, especially with the terrorist media being devoted to inspiring and promoting their criminal operations, which have affected thousands of victims, including children, women and the elderly.”

He hailed the efforts of the security services in their fight against terrorism and the great improvement in reducing its crimes in recent years, expressing his sympathies for the victims and his support for their families to overcome the aftermath of these crimes.

Koman stressed that the Council of Arab Interior Ministers has taken special measures to raise awareness about the pain of victims of terrorist acts, including the development of media programs to raise security awareness and improve citizens’ contribution to countering terrorist acts in implementation of the Arab counter-terrorism strategy. This was in addition to assigning the Arab bureau for security-related information activities, which operates under the General Secretariat of the Council of Arab Interior Ministers, to prepare media programs and materials to raise awareness about the dangers of terrorist acts and the suffering they cause.

He highlighted that the council’s efforts go beyond raising awareness to taking concrete measures to support the victims of terrorist acts, including members of the Arab security services and their families.

Koman said that these efforts include the establishment of an Arab security solidarity fund to cover the expenses of medical, social, and psychological support for Arab police and security personnel and their families, in addition to the development of a model for the organizational structure of a department in the security services specializing in psychological counseling.

“The department will be operated by social workers and psychologists who have the capacity to help victims overcome the pain and tragedy of terrorism,” he said.

Koman praised the efforts of Arab countries in assisting the victims of terrorist acts and alleviating their suffering, including providing financial and moral support and providing them with treatment and privileges, such as monthly wages, scholarships for their families and medals of honors to their martyrs.

He urged public and civil society institutions to develop awareness-raising efforts through holding seminars and organizing events to remember the suffering of the victims and provide them with social, psychological and financial support.

Koman concluded by saying a prayer for the victims harmed by terrorist acts and members of the security services who died foiling terrorist crimes and fighting terrorists.