DUBAI, Sept 3 (Reuters) – Al Qaeda leader Ayman al Zawahri
on Wednesday announced the formation of an Indian branch of his
militant group he said would spread Islamic rule and “raise the
flag of jihad” across the subcontinent.
In a 55-minute video posted online, Zawahri also renewed a
longstanding vow of loyalty to Afghan Taliban leader Mullah
Omar, in an apparent snub to the Islamic State armed group
challenging al Qaeda for leadership of transnational Islamist
DUBAI (Reuters) – The Islamic State released a video purporting to show the beheading of American hostage Steven Sotloff, a monitoring service said on Tuesday, raised the stakes in its confrontation with Washington over U.S. air strikes on its fighters in Iraq.
A masked figure in the video also issued a threat against a British hostage, a man the group named as David Haines, and warned governments to back off “this evil alliance of America against the Islamic State”, the SITE monitoring service said.
RIYADH/DUBAI (Reuters) – With militant Islamists gaining the upper hand in Syria’s rebel movement and grabbing big tracts of Western Iraq, Saudi Arabia’s ruling family faces an increasingly uncomfortable dilemma.
The Al Saud have long seen the conflicts in Iraq and Syria as a pivotal battle for the future of the Middle East, pitting Sunni Muslims against a radical, revolutionary, Shi’ite Iran.
DUBAI (Reuters) – Air strikes against Libyan Islamist militants that U.S. officials had said were staged by Egypt and the United Arab Emirates could mark an escalation of a regional struggle over the future of the Arab world.
Arab responsibility for the attacks would add to a picture of the West’s regional allies acting increasingly independently in the absence of decisive U.S. involvement, seeking security goals with which Washington might not agree.
DUBAI (Reuters) – Air strikes by Egypt and the United Arab Emirates on Libyan Islamists – as alleged by Washington despite denials from Cairo and the Gulf state – would mark an escalation of a regional struggle over the future of the Arab world.
If true, Arab responsibility for the attacks would also add to a picture of the West’s regional allies acting increasingly independently in the absence of decisive U.S. involvement, seeking security goals with which Washington may not agree.
DUBAI (Reuters) – In hiding, targeted by drone strikes and unable to land a blow in the West, al Qaeda’s ageing leaders are losing a power struggle with ultra-radical young militants in Iraq and Syria who see themselves as the true successors to Osama bin Laden.
The shadowy network that targeted the West and its Arab allies for almost a generation is increasingly seen as stale, tired and ineffectual on the hardcore jihadi social media forums and Twitter accounts that incubate potential militant recruits.
BAGHDAD/DUBAI (Reuters) – The militants dismantling Iraq’s borders and threatening regional war are far from united – theirs is a marriage of convenience between ultra-hardline religious zealots and more pragmatic Sunni armed groups.
For now, they share a common enemy in Shi’ite Islamist Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, whom Iraq’s Sunni minority accuse of marginalising and harassing them.
BAGHDAD/DUBAI (Reuters) – The militants dismantling Iraq’s borders and threatening regional war are far from united — theirs is a marriage of convenience between ultra-hardline religious zealots and more pragmatic Sunni armed groups.
For now, they share a common enemy in Shi’ite Islamist Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, whom Iraq’s Sunni minority accuse of marginalizing and harassing them.
DUBAI (Reuters) – This week’s advance by Sunni insurgents in Iraq provides a powerful argument for why Iran and Saudi Arabia should bury their Cold War-style feud, but is nonetheless likely to set back detente between the Gulf’s dominant Sunni and Shi’ite powers.
After decades of often overt Saudi-Iranian hostility that polarized the Middle East – and three years of proxy war in Syria – the Sunni monarchy and Shi’ite revolutionary state had gingerly begun in recent months to explore ways to reach out.
DOHA/DUBAI (Reuters) – Exiled leaders of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood are struggling to regroup, targeted by hostile Arab powers, cut off from senior colleagues imprisoned back home and challenged by angry young followers tempted to seek change by violence.
Gathered over the past 10 months in Qatar, Turkey, Britain and elsewhere, hundreds of activists have set about trying to isolate Egypt’s army-backed government diplomatically for last year’s removal of an elected Brotherhood-backed administration.