A militant al-Qaeda-affiliated group has called on Egyptians to up arms against the country’s military, saying that a violent crackdown on Islamist protestors showed peaceful methods were pointless, an internet statement posted on Saturday said.
“There is nothing more right in God’s religion [Islam] than those who speak of the infidelity, reneging on Islam and abandonment of religion, and call for the necessity to fight these armies, foremost of which is the Egyptian army,” said Abu Mohammed al-Adnani, spokesman for the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, according to the Arabic recording quoted by Reuters.
Adnani slammed the Brotherhood and the Salafist al-Nour party, stating that the two groups have opted for non-violent protest methods and what he called a futile secular approach to power through democratic means. He said this had left Brotherhood members either fugitives, imprisoned, or dead.
“The Egyptian army is part and a mere copy of these armies which are seeking in a deadly effort to prevent God’s laws from being adopted and trying hard to consecrate the principles of secularism and man-made laws,” added Adnani.
Since former Islamist President Mohammad Mursi was overthrown last month, many Egyptian soldiers have been killed in attacks by suspected Islamist militants, mostly in the country’s Sinai peninsula.
The Muslim Brotherhood, from which Mursi hails, abandoned violence several decades ago, denying any links with militants, many of whom have become more powerful since former President Hosni Mubarak’s ouster in 2011.
The United States is worried that growing insecurity in the Sinai threatens Israel, the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, as well as the Suez Canal.