Monday, September 14, 2015
Gaza militant group denies pledging allegiance to Islamic State.
Gaza militant group denies pledging allegiance to Islamic State. (xinhuanet).
A militant group in the Gaza Strip denied on Saturday that it had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (IS) group, after an earlier an announcement on the social media said it did so.
The Salafi militant group in Gaza is called Jaish al-Islam, or the Army of Islam. Its commander, Mumtaz Dughmush, made the denial in a statement published on the Arabi 21 news website.
On Friday, several IS activists published a leaflet on their Facebook pages which was signed by the Army of Islam, saying that the group pledged allegiance to the IS and its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
"We are not aware of any leaflet signed by our group that is pledging allegiance to the IS," Dughmush said. "Some Palestinian intelligence groups are standing behind issuing such a fake leaflet."
Jaish el-Islam is was one of Gaza's three militant groups. It has involved in kidnapping Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit in southeast Gaza in 2006.
Mahmoud al-Zahar, the Hamas strongman, has earlier said that there is no IS in Gaza and the whole Gaza Strip is under the full grip of his movement.
Over the past three months, Hamas security forces have been cracking down on Salafists by arresting dozens of them.