MOSCOW, September 16 (RIA Novosti) - Branches of al-Qaeda in North Africa and in the Arabian peninsula released a joint statement Tuesday, calling extremists in Iraq and Syria to join together in order to oppose the US-led anti-terrorism coalition.
An appeal by al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, distributed in Twitter, urged Islamic extremists in Iraq and Syria to stop fighting each other and "unite against the American campaign and its evil coalition," Agence France-Press reported, citing the message.
"Make the unity of the infidel nations against you a reason for your unity against them," the statement reads.
An al-Qaeda breakaway, the Islamic State (IS) group, formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) seized vast areas across Iraq and Syria in 2014, capturing the attention of international media. Rapidly advancing in Iraq and Syria, the IS has been clashing with Jabhat al-Nusra, a group, loyal to al-Qaeda's leader. This has led to a rift between the organizations, making al-Qaeda sever ties with its former branch and denounce the IS-declared caliphate.
The IS offensive in northern Iraq compelled the United States to begin carrying out airstrikes against the group's militants in August. US President Barack Obama went further by announcing that Washington would lead a coalition aimed at destroying the IS, he went as far as to stress that he would not hesitate to authorize anti-IS airstrikes in Syria.