Al-Qaida Vows to Continue Attacking Prisons
The leader of the Yemen-based al-Qaida offshoot vowed in a message posted Monday to free fellow militants from prisons and urged jailed fighters to remain faithful to the terror group’s ideology.
The note by Nasser al-Wahishi, a onetime aide to Osama bin Laden, came after last week’s closure of 19 U.S. diplomatic missions in the Middle East and Africa. The shutdowns were triggered by the interception of a secret message between al-Qaida chief Ayman al-Zawahri and al-Wahishi about plans for a major attack.
The message also followed an announcement by Yemeni authorities that they had discovered an al-Qaida plot to target foreign embassies in the Yemeni capital, Sanaa, and international shipping in the Red Sea.
In the note, al-Wahishi rallied al-Qaida prisoners not “to be lured by their jailers” and false promises of a “lush life if they abandon jihad,” or holy war.
He addressed his message to “prisoners who are in the jails of the oppressors because of their religion” and told them to “rejoice … as your brothers are pounding the walls of injustice and demolishing the thrones of oppression.”
Al-Wahishi also said “victory is imminent” to ensure their freedom, adding: “We have not forgotten you and will never forget you.”
The note did not name the prisons from which al-Qaida fighters would be freed or give any details of the purported plans. The authenticity of the message could not be independently verified, but it was posted on a website commonly used by the militants.