Qaeda in Arabian Peninsula denounces "crusader" French in Mali

DUBAI Tue Feb 12, 2013 6:59am EST

A Malian soldier (C, in helmet) patrols with French soldiers along the street outside the Ahmed Baba Institute, or Ahmed Baba Centre for Documentation and Research, in Timbuktu February 2, 2013. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

A Malian soldier (C, in helmet) patrols with French soldiers along the street outside the Ahmed Baba Institute, or Ahmed Baba Centre for Documentation and Research, in Timbuktu February 2, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Benoit Tessier

DUBAI (Reuters) - The Yemen-based offshoot of Al Qaeda urged Muslims to sacrifice themselves and their money to help fend off what it called the "Crusader war" in Mali, according to a statement posted online on Tuesday.

France intervened in Mali last month to check a push south towards the capital Bamako by Islamist forces who seized control of the north of the country in the confusion that followed a military coup in March 2012.

Their surprise advance pushed Mali to the forefront of U.S. and European security concerns, with fears the Islamists would turn the country into a base for international attacks.

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) compared the French intervention to what it called the "Zionist occupation of Palestine".

The group said supporting Muslims in Mali was "a duty for every able Muslim, to offer himself or his money, each according to his ability."

Formed in 2009, AQAP has carried suicide attacks on Yemeni government installations and military targets in Yemen. It was also behind a December 2009 plot to blow up a US airliner as it approached Detroit and a 2010 plan to send bombs hidden in computer printers on two cargo aircraft.

Former CIA director David Petraeus has described AQAP as the "most dangerous regional node in the global jihad".

The Mali offensive by French troops, which began last month, has pushed Islamist insurgents out of their strongholds in the north. But the militants launched a surprise raid in the heart of the Malian town of Gao on Sunday.

The brazenness of the rebel raid, which followed successive blasts by two suicide bombers at a northern checkpoint, was a surprise to the French-led military operation, which had so far faced little real resistance from the Islamists.

(Reporting by Ali Abdelatti in Cairo, writing by Sami Aboudi, Editing by WIlliam Maclean and John Stonestreet)

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Comments (4)
Bush’s crusade has unfortunately engulfed whole regions into instability and war. No longer are there any sovereign nations rather stooges are plenty.

Feb 12, 2013 7:10am EST  --  Report as abuse
americanguy wrote:
The Crusades stopped the Mulsim plan to invade and conquer Europe, so calling something a “crusade” is actually a compliment especially since the same Muslim attempt to take over the world is going on now.

Feb 12, 2013 7:26am EST  --  Report as abuse
“We are benefiting from one thing, and that is the attack on the Twin Towers and Pentagon, and the American struggle in Iraq,” -Netanyahu

The modern crusade like its predecessor has ravaged the Middle East, killing and pillage are its hallmark, trying to keep middle easterners in the dark ages. Like the Middle Ages the Muslim stooges have been exposed.

Feb 12, 2013 8:54am EST  --  Report as abuse
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