Al-Qaeda offshoot in Yemen, know as al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), released a statement earlier today to deny its role in a recent public bombing that generated a public outrage against the militant group. Two impoverished explosive devices (IED) went off last Thursday in a busy market in the capital Sana’a. Two people were killed and a dozen were injured. The outrage against AQAP was pervasive across Yemeni social media platforms.
The following was the main points AQAP statement highlighted:
· 1- We categorically deny any involvement in the Thursday bombing.
· 2- We reaffirm that we are only at war with the Crusaders (America & its allies) along with whoever cooperates or collaborates with it (Govts that pledged war on terror).
· 3- We condemn killing any Muslim whose blood is forbidden to shed (the implied exception here are those Muslims who pledged war on terror).
· 4- We caution all Muslims that such public bombing bears the hallmarks of American Govt that aims to distort the image of Jihad and Jihadists. The kind of such bombings are everywhere in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.
A quick look at the short statement shows the AQAP is monitoring social media very well and began realizing their reputation, put out by its pundits as sympathizers as the defender of the nation against the West, is at stake.
Another thing, which is alarming, the public souks across Yemen will likely witness more and more IEDs going off, with the perpetrator now already known: the American and its puppets.
Over the past three years, more than two hundreds of Yemeni police and military officers have been assassinated by masked men the Govt. believed to be of the militant AQAP. Recently, the series of assassination has run rife, creating the largest part of the public anger. AQAP’s recent statement, however didn’t touch on that.
The statement, which seemed to have been prepared in a haste to alleviate the public anger, was written by inexperience sympathizer who, unlike slain cleric Anwar Alawlaki and other AQAP’s clerics, lacks a great deal of Sharia jurisprudence as well as justification skills.
Another last thing this statement and few others show is that the AQAP’s media men responsible for distribution the group’s materials were likely killed and its mailing list thus was lost. Since last year, particularly when the group was forced out of its stronghold in Abyan and Shabwa, the group has been largely dependent on one local writer who posted this (and all other recent) statement(s) through his Facebook page. A previous FB account of that same writer was closed down by Facebook administration for posting militant content.
That was a quick look and should not be counted on. Yet, for an in depth analysis, readers should check the following experts in the militant group:
Gregory Johnson, author of The Last Refuge: Yemen, al-Qaeda and the America’s War in Arabia. You can also follow him at: @gregorydjohnsen .
Jihadica, a website analyzing the militant group’s.