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 Ansar al-Islam terrorist group claims responsibility for Mosul attack against U.S. troops: website

 Source : VOI | AFP | AP | NKR
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Ansar al-Islam terrorist group claims responsibility for Mosul attack against U.S. troops  31.1.2008


January 31, 2008

Ninewa, Northwest Iraq, -- Ansar al-Islam, an extremist terrorist group linked to al Qaeda, issued a statement on Wednesday claiming responsibility for the attack that killed five U.S. soldiers in the northern volatile province of Ninewa.

“The group targeted a U.S. army patrol accompanied by Kurdish forces (peshmerga) in Sumer district, eastern Mosul ” said a statement published on a website used by Ansar al-Islam terrorist group.

The announcement pointed out “the operation carried out by planting a number of improvised explosive devises (IED) on a road and then indulging in clashes with the U.S. soldiers”.

Five U.S. soldiers were killed in a coordinated ambush in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul on Monday, the U.S. military said, making it one of the deadliest single attacks against American forces in months. The patrol was hit by a roadside bomb and then came under small arms fire from a nearby mosque, the military said.  

Mullah Krekar, the founder of radical and Terrorist Islamist group Ansar al-Islam. Krekar, whose real name is Fateh Najmeddin Faraj

The attack came a day after extra Iraqi troops arrived for a final push against al Qaeda in what has been described as their last major urban stronghold.

The push in Mosul was announced by Iraqi primer minister Nouri al-Maliki after a huge blast last week in a building the U.S. military said had been used by al Qaeda to store weapons and explosives killed up to 50 people.

Ansar al-Islam is an extremist al-Qaeda-linked group, was founded in 2001, and went under the mantra of al-Qaeda in Iraq after ousting Saddam Hussein’s regime by the U.S. troops in March 2003.

Mulla Krekar, who was born Najm al-Din Faraj Ahmad, has lived in Norway as a refugee since 1991 and has been under threat of deportation since Norwegian media revealed he was the founder of Ansar al-Islam, which figures on the United States' list of terrorist organisations.

The Iraqi Kurd admits that he founded the group but insists he has not headed it since May 2002.

Krekar is adamant his life would be in danger if he returned to Iraq.

He has come out in support of "jihad", or holy war, in Iraq and has compared the US occupation of Iraq to the Nazi invasion of European countries, and insisted that Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden is "a good man".

Krekar, who was born Najm al-Din Faraj Ahmad in 1956, first made headlines in Norway in 2002, when a television documentary showed how he frequently slipped back into northern Iraq to lead the radical armed separatist group Ansar al-Islam, which sought the establishment of an Islamic state.

In 2003, before the liberation of Iraq, the U.S. government portrayed Krekar and his network as a link between Al Qaeda and the government of Saddam Hussein.
The claim, however, was never substantiated. He was arrested several times, in Norway and abroad, and charged with crimes ranging from terrorism to drug smuggling, but nothing held up in court.

Earlier Krekar said "If you have airplanes and I don't, I will hit you where it really hurts, and 9/11 was like this," he said. "Bush says bin Laden, al-Zawahari and Zarquawi are terrorists, but for me they are symbols of courage."

Ansar al-Islam group listed as a terrorist organization by the U.S. and Iraqi Kurdistan. The group is also suspected in suicide bombings of coalition forces in Iraqi Kurdistan, Krekar in one of the most wanted in Iraqi Kurdistan region on charges of terrorist attacks in the region.

Norwegian state radio network NRK reported on October 9, that Krekar runs several Internet sites, including one called that presents American loses in Iraq and Afghanistan as positive developments and has links to other sites with videos of attacks on U.S. forces.

Krekar has refused to talk about the site. NRK said there is no doubt that the sites are registered to Krekar's wife and are operated from his home address in Oslo.

"Osama bin Laden is a good man. I wish him a long life. He is a good Muslim and he is against the Bush administration," Krekar, known for his controversial statements, told AFP in Oslo in 2006.

Ansar al-Islam terrorist attacks in Kurdistan region (Iraq):

Seven Kurdish border guards killed in Iraqi Kurdistan ambush by Ansar al-Islam terrorist group on July 16, 2007

In May 2005 a suicide bomber killed at least 60 people and wounded 150 more when he blew himself up at the office of a Kurdish party in the northern Iraqi city of Erbil

On May 9, 2007 a suicide truck bomber from Ansar al-Islam kills 19, wounds 70 in Iraqi Kurdistan's capital of Erbil, Kurdish Ansar al-Islam terrorist group has claimed responsibility for the blast.

May 13 was another bloody day for the Kurds, a suicide car bomb targeted the headquarters of the KDP party in Makhmour city in Kurdistan region killed at least 30 people and wounded 115 others including the city's mayor.
Nine members of Ansar al-Islam were arrested for these terrorist attacks. Security forces in Iraq’s Kurdistan autonomous region have arrested several followers of previously tolerated Islamist parties, accusing them of links to insurgents.

On February 26, 2007, Houzan Mahmoud, an international representative of MADRE's sister organization, the Organization of Women's Freedom in Iraq, received a death threat by e-mail signed by Ansar al-Islam terrorist group. The death threat, delivered via e-mail, read, "With the permission of Great God, we will kill you either in Iraq or in London by the middle of March, because you are campaigning against Islam. You should be sent to God for punishment."



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