Erbil, Kurdistan Region – Dozens of Islamist militants from the Russian Federation swore allegiance to the Islamic State group (IS/ISIS) last week, which raised the concerns of Moscow.
A videotape appeared online showed a statement by a group of Islamist militants from the Russian Federation declaring their allegiance to the leader of the Islamic State, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. According to the statement, the fighters are mostly from the republics of Dagestan, Chechnya, Ingushetia and Kabardino-Balkaria.
The statement, which was made in Arabic and Russian, was under the banner “Statement of Caucasus Jihadists, swearing allegiance to Caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, and joining Islamic State”.
“Obedience to God, we swear allegiance to the caliph Ibrahim bin Awad bin Ibrahim Quraishi Husseini (aka Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi),” the statement read.
Commenting on the statement, Abu Jaber Dagestani, a prominent jihadist, announced on his personal Twitter account: “Do not believe everything you hear, not all jihadists of Caucasus swore allegiance to the Islamic State.”
“Those who declared allegiance have nothing to do with Sharia laws at all,” he tweeted.
Occasionally, Russian officials also admit that thousands of citizens, mostly from the Caucasus, traveled to Syria and Iraq to participate in the fighting within the ranks of Islamic State.
The Secretary of the Russian Security Council told reporters in Moscow that more than 2,000 Russian nationals have joined IS ranks so far, adding that many of them “return home and continue their activities in Russia”.
“These Islamist fighters crossed the border through Turkey into Syria and joined the ranks of Islamic State there,” he added.
Reporting by: Sarbaz Yousef
Source: ARA News
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