Tag Archives: Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL)

Al-Qaida breakaway formally declares Islamic State

BAGHDAD (AP) — The al-Qaida breakaway group that has seized much of northern Syria and huge tracks of neighboring Iraq formally declared the creation of an Islamic state on Sunday in the territory under its control.

The spokesman for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, Abu Mohammed al-Adnani, made the announcement in an audio statement posted online. Islamic extremists have long dreamed of recreating the Islamic state, or caliphate, that ruled over the Middle East for hundreds of years.

Abu Mohammed al-Adnani said the group’s chief, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, is the new leader, or caliph, of the Islamic state. He called on those living in the areas under the organization’s control to swear allegiance to al-Baghdadi and support him.

Battle Continues for Tikrit

“The legality of all emirates, groups, states and organizations becomes null by the expansion of the caliph’s authority and the arrival of its troops to their areas,” al-Adnani said.

He said that with the creation of the caliphate, the group was changing its name to just the Islamic State, dropping the mention of Iraq and the Levant.

It was unclear what immediate practical impact the declaration would have on the ground in Syria and Iraq, or among the wider global jihadi community.

Sunni insurgents close in on Iraq’s biggest oil refinery

TIKRIT Iraq (Reuters) – Sunni insurgents from an al Qaeda splinter group closed in on Iraq’s biggest oil refinery on Wednesday after seizing the northern city of Mosul in a devastating show of strength against the Shi’ite-led government. Security sources … read more