Libyan City Of Darna Becomes Part Of Islamic Caliphate, Pledges Allegiance To Al-Baghdadi
And let’s not forget Benghazi. It may not be official yet, but that could be added to the list, too. Pledging allegiance to the ISIS Caliphate. It’s quickly becoming the Islamic world’s version of a snowball …
Daniel 11:43, “He will gain control of the treasures of gold and silver and all the riches of Egypt, with the Libyans and Nubians [Sudan] in submission.”
- Flashback: Sudanese Salafi Group Endorses Islamic State’s New ISIS Caliphate
- Flashback: Egypt: Powerful Islamist Militant Group In Sinai Swears Allegiance To ISIS Caliphate
By Maggie Michael, Associated Press – “On a chilly night, bearded militants gathered at a stage strung with colorful lights in Darna, a Mediterranean coastal city long notorious as Libya’s center for jihadi radicals. With a roaring chant, they pledged their allegiance to the leader of the Islamic State group.
With that meeting 10 days ago, the militants dragged Darna into becoming the first city outside of Iraq and Syria to join the ‘caliphate’ announced by the extremist group. Already, the city has seen religious courts ordering killings in public, floggings of residents accused of violating Shariah law, as well as enforced segregation of male and female students. Opponents of the militants have gone into hiding or fled, terrorized by a string of slayings aimed at silencing them.
The takeover of the city, some 1,000 miles (1,600 kilometers) from the nearest territory controlled by the Islamic State group, offers a revealing look into how the radical group is able to exploit local conditions. A new Islamic State ’emir’ now leads the city, identified as Mohammed Abdullah, a little-known Yemeni militant sent from Syria known by his nom de guerre Abu al-Baraa el-Azdi, according to several local activists and a former militant from Darna.
A number of leading Islamic State militants came to the city from Iraq and Syria earlier this year and over a few months united most of Darna’s multiple but long-divided extremist factions behind them. They paved the way by killing any rivals, including militants, according to local activists, former city council members and a former militant interviewed by The Associated Press. They all spoke on condition of anonymity out of fear for their lives.
Darna could be a model for the group to try to expand elsewhere. Notably, in Lebanon, army troops recently captured a number of militants believed to be planning to seize several villages in the north and proclaim them part of the ‘caliphate.’ Around the region, a few militant groups have pledged allegiance to its leader, Iraqi militant Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. But none hold cohesive territory like those in Darna do.
The vow of allegiance in Darna gives the Islamic State group a foothold in Libya, an oil-rich North African nation whose central government control has collapsed in the chaos since the 2011 ouster and death of longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi.” Read more.
Flashback: Al-Qaeda Plants Its Flag in Benghazi, Libya – ‘Whomever Speaks Ill of This Flag, We Will Cut Off His Tongue’ – “Earlier this week, I went to the Benghazi courthouse and confirmed the rumors: an al Qaeda flag was clearly visible; its Arabic script declaring that ‘there is no God but Allah’ and a full moon underneath. When I tried to take pictures, a Salafi-looking guard, wearing a green camouflage outfit, rushed towards me and demanded to know what I was doing. My response was straightforward: I was taking a picture of the flag. He gave me an intimidating look and hissed, ‘Whomever speaks ill of this flag, we will cut off his tongue. I recommend that you don’t publish these. You will bring trouble to yourself.’” Read more.