On Saturday, Ayman al-Zawahiri, the number two leader in al-Qaeda, announced that a revived Egyptian terrorist group had joined the terror network. The first officially announced al-Qaeda branch in Egypt, the Arab world’s most populous nation, the group Gamaa Islamiya is a revived version of a group that waged a campaign of violence in Egypt during the 1990’s but was defeated in a government crackdown.
Gamma Islamiyah is led by Mohammed al-Islambouli, the younger brother of Khaled al-Islambouli, the terrorist who assassinated Egyptian President Anwar al-Sadat in 1981. Khaled al-Islambouli was later executed by the Egyptian government. Mohammed al-Islambouli left Egypt in the mid-1980’s and was thought to be in Afghanistan working with Usama bin Laden. It is not known at this time how large this new version of Gamma Islamiyah has in Egypt.
In the videotape played by al-Jazeera, Ayman al-Zawahiri did not mention any imminent threats of attacks in Egypt. It was Zawahiri’s second message in just over a week and his eleventh for the year. (Read the full article)