Kommentar

Ble Ansar al-Islam skapt av Ayman al-Zawahiri? Var det derfor han truet norske interesser i utlandet?

The Guardian sier det er en oppfatning at behandlingen av mullah Krekar lå bak truslene fra Zawahiri i mai ifjor.

Guardian har en oversikt over terroristnettverkene, og det som står om Ansar al-Islam og Zarqawi er verdt å ta med seg:

Ansar al-Islam
A northern Iraq-based group best known until the end of the 2003 Iraq war for fighting rivals such as the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, one of two 2_kommentar factions who then controlled the area. The US bombed its bases as it fought to topple Saddam Hussein but the group was not extinguished. Instead it has been increasingly blamed for attacks in Iraq. A purported Bin Laden statement in November praised the Ansar militants, one of the many suggested links between him and the group. It is also thought that Norway’s threat to prosecute its alleged leader Mullah Krekar (who was granted political asylum in the country) was a factor behind Zawahiri’s exhortation in May 2003 for Muslims to attack its embassies.

There is a possibility that Ansar was set up by Zawahiri and his associates. Documents discovered by the New York Times in Afghanistan discuss the creation of an «Iraqi Kurdistan Islamic Brigade» weeks prior to the formation of the group in December 2001. Since the defeat of Saddam, the US has named Ansar as its principal «terrorist adversary» and blamed it for attacks including the twin suicide bombings in Irbil in February 2004 that killed more than 100 people. It may also form the core of the self-proclaimed protectors of Sunni Muslims Jaish Ansar al-Sunna, which claimed responsibility for the attack.

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi

Not a group but an individual. The Jordanian (wounded in the 2001 Afghan war) was named by the US as the author of an intercepted letter putting forward a strategy to ignite civil war between Iraq’s Sunni and Shia communities. He has been blamed for attacks including the simultaneous blasts at the beginning of this month on Shia shrines in Baghdad and Kerbala that left at least 143 people dead in Iraq’s bloodiest day since the end of major fighting. The US has linked him to Ansar al-Islam while Moroccan investigators tie him to Jamal Zougam, one of 10 people arrested in connection with the Madrid commuter train bombing. A Spanish judge has in turn linked Mr Zougam to Imad Yarkas, the alleged leader of a Madrid terrorist cell who is awaiting trial on charges of taking part in the September 11 plot. Zarqawi leads al-Tauheed, a disparate group with cells across the Middle East and Europe, but there is little evidence of direct links between him and the Bin Laden inner circle.

The Islamist terror network

Simon Jeffery pieces together the complex links between the key culprits of global terrorism