Al Qaeda releases video on Kashmir, criticizes Pakistan for exploiting the Mujahideen for their political objectives

Al Qaeda has released a new video message calling for jihad on Kashmir and also criticizing Pakistan for exploiting terror groups to achieve their own political motives. The Al Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri delivered the message through the outfits media arm, As Sahab.

Zawahiri has called upon Kashmiri jihadist groups to “single-mindedly focus on inflicting unrelenting blows on the Indian Army and government so as to bleed the Indian economy and make India suffer sustained losses in manpower and equipment”.

While delivering the message Zawahiri does not mention the slain terrorist Zakir Musa, however, a picture of Musa flashed on the screen while the chief spoke on Kashmir. Musa was the Chief of the terrorist group Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind, a cell of terrorist organization Al-Qaeda. He was killed in May this year by security forces in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir.

Urging Muslims to take up jihad in Kashmir, Zawahiri said: “the first vital step is to turn the Jihad in Kashmir into Jihad for the sake of Allah…to liberate Kashmir jihad from the clutches of Pakistan intelligence agencies.”

Zawahiri had revealed the role of Pakistan sponsored terror in Kashmir. He criticized Pakistan for not being trustworthy and called both the Pakistan army and government as “toadies of America”.  According to him, Pakistan prevented Arab Mujahideen from heading to Kashmir after the Russians were driven out of Afghanistan.

He criticized Pakistan for exploiting jihadist groups. In his message, he said, “Pakistan is exploiting the Mujahideen for specific political objectives, only to dump or persecute them later; the beneficiaries, in the end, being a bunch of traitors who fill their pockets with bribes and illegitimate wealth”.

Citing the examples of Dhaka surrender, Balochistan, Waziristan & Swat, the chief said that Pakistan can’t be trusted as when it comes to defending Muslims, Pakistan army possesses a very dark history.

The Al Qaeda chief also called upon unnamed scholars to spread the idea that jihad is a worldwide movement that must be taken up by every Muslim. He said, “You [the scholars] must clearly state that supporting the jihad in Kashmir, the Philippines, Chechnya, Central Asia, Iraq, Syria, the Arabian Peninsula, Somalia, the Islamic Maghreb and Turkistan is an individual obligation on all Muslims, until sufficient strength is achieved to expel the disbelieving occupier from Muslim lands”.

The government has informed the Parliament on Tuesday that ever since the Balakot air strikes, there has been a 43% drop in infiltration. After the Pulwama attack, the IAF had conducted a successful operation targeting terror camps of Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) harbored by Pakistan.

The government has also said post the air strike, Pakistan has changed its strategy. Intelligence reports have said that Pakistan is currently strengthening its military assets and have increased the surveillance fearing possible attacks from India in the future.

Last month, the Al Qaeda had released another video message eulogizing the slain terrorist Zakir Musa and announced Hameed Lelhari as his successor of Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind (AGH). The Kashmiri group Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind is supported by the Al Qaeda and is regarded as its branch in Kashmir.

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