Friday, July 22, 2011

AQAP pledges allegiance to Zawahiri

SANAA, Yemen, July 22 (UPI) -- Yemeni group al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula announced that it swore allegiance to Osama bin Laden's successor Ayman al-Zawahiri.

Zawahiri assumed the leadership position of al-Qaida shortly after U.S. Navy SEALs killed Osama bin Laden at his compound in Pakistan in May.

In its latest publication Inspire, AQAP eulogizes bin Laden and vows to "continue to fight and lay down their lives" for al-Qaida under Zawahiri's leadership.

"We ask Allah to assist Sheik Ayman in this great task," the newsletter, AQAP's sixth, reads.

AQAP in the opening of its newsletter apologizes for delays in publication, blaming turmoil in Yemen for complications.

"The country is falling apart and our brothers are busy picking up the pieces," writes Inspire Editor Yahya Ibrahim.

Yemen is in the grips of political conflict. President Ali Abdullah Saleh, recovering in Saudi Arabia from wounds suffered during a June 3 attack, has refused to sign a deal to end his tenure.

"While the different parties (in Yemen) are bickering, the mujahedin are busy laying the foundations for the coming rule of Shariah (Islamic law)," writes Ibrahim.

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