Taliban debates 'Islamic State' legitimacy

The Afghan Taliban's website on Thursday urged Muslims to avoid extremism and remain united.

Taliban debates 'Islamic State' legitimacy

World Bulletin / News Desk

The Afghan Taliban have urged Muslims to avoid extremism and remain united, a message apparently aimed at the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), which recently declared an Islamic State in territory it controls in Iraq and Syria.

The Arabic message, posted on the Afghan Taliban's website on Thursday and translated by SITE intelligence group, addressed fighters in Iraq and Syria whose announcement of an independent state last month poses a direct challenge to al Qaeda's dominance.

"It is worthy for a shurah (consultation) council to be formed from the leaders of all the jihadi factions and the distinguished people among the experts and the scholars in Sham (Greater Syria) in order to solve their conflicts," the message said.

"Muslims also should avoid extremism in religion, and judging others without evidence, and distrusting one another," it said. "They should avoid conflict and dispute, and not think their opinions are better than others. Mercy and compassion should prevail."

On June 29, the al Qaeda offshoot Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant announced that it had renamed itself Islamic State and proclaimed its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as "Caliph" - the head of the state.

In recent weeks, fighters from the Islamic State have overrun the Iraqi city of Mosul and advanced towards the capital of Baghdad. In Syria they have captured territory in the north and east, along the border with Iraq.

Taliban spokesmen in both Pakistan and Afghanistan declined to comment on al-Baghdadi's claim to be the global leader of all Muslims. The Afghan and Pakistani Taliban are separate but allied.

Two previously unknown Pakistani rebel groups have sent out messages pledging allegiance to the ISIL, but their strength and existence could not be verified.  

Last Mod: 11 Temmuz 2014, 16:57
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