As the battle continues in Middle East region with the ISIS militant group, a new development took place when a jihadi group known as Ansar Beit Al Maqdis has reportedly declared alliance with the Islamic State group. The militant group has announced its support for ISIS and the self-proclaimed caliph and leader, Abu Bakr-al-Bhaghdadi.
An audio recording has been released by the Ansar jihadi group joining ISIS in their war against non-Islamic forces. The recording urges Egyptian President Abdel Fatteh el Sissi to withdraw its regime and join forces with them in the interest of establishing a true Islamic governance system.
The Egyptian forces that are battling Islamic forces have killed seven militants in the northern Sinai Peninsula. Egyptian battle forces have been defending regions around Gaza strip where several attacks were carried out recently by Anser Beit al Maqdis, wanting to free the eight mile long zone.
The recent coalition airstrikes in western Iraq are reported to have hit and injured Bhaghdadi, yet this has not been confirmed yet. The situation tends to become more tense as the rumors circulate around media currently. The Iraqi minister of defense said that the airstrikes conducted by Iraqi battle forces caused injury to Baghdadi. Iraqi intelligence had news that Baghdadi was present during the airstrikes and the operation was conducted specifically to target him.
ISIS has responded by stating that their leader is in good condition and will continue its operation is the region. Despite many months of ISIS’s continued advances in Baghdad, it has failed in reaching their goals due to the resistance of U.S. coalition forces and neighboring country Iran’s support.
The United States has sent an additional 1,500 army troops to help and train the Iraqi military to combat ISIS on the ground. According to President Obama, extremist forces need to be attacked from all sides to push them out of the region. Airstrikes by U.S. and allied forces was one strategic operation, ground troops and ground battles are another.
Joining the Ansar Beit al Maqdis group with the Islamic State will further increase the tension in the battle between Middle Eastern nations and the allied forces and ISIS. Khattar Abou Diab, a professor at University of Paris stated that all extremist jihadi groups are part of an international coalition that is operating at local and global levels with their own formulated agenda and objectives. ISIS, being on the front line, and its leader, Abu Bakr al-Bhaghdadi, is taking on the leadership role after many other leaders have been killed in previous operations.
In a recent media report, it has been confirmed that Bhaghdaid’s wife and children have been arrested and detained in Lebanon as they crossed the Syrian border during the recent operation. Although not much information has been released about the arrest, sources indicated that his family was traveling with a fake identity. Investigations are being carried on by the army and his family are being kept under strict surveillance.
ISIS and its joined extremist forces are a main concern of terrorism and the battle not only going on in the Middle East, but all over the world. With growing tension on the borders of Syria, Iraq, Iran and other regions, the extremist group is only expected to dig in further. The situation appears to call for the world to join hands as the threat grows to a global level.
By Atika Jilani