Gaza Salafists wave Al-Qaeda flag during prot
Gaza Salafists wave Al-Qaeda flag during protAFP/File

Egyptian Salafist Muhammad Al-Zawahiri, brother of Al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri, recently called for jihad against the Jews. In a television interview which aired on Egypt’s CBC TV on October 4, Zawahiri also said that he does not recognize the elections that were held in the country nor the legitimacy of President Mohammed Morsi.

The interview was translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

“I do not belong to Al-Qaeda or any other organization, but ideologically speaking, I am in agreement with all these organizations. Our common denominator is the Islamic sharia,” Al-Zawahiri said during the interview.

Asked whether he is in agreement with the ideology of Al-Qaeda, he replied, “With its ideology, but I'm not involved in its activity. The people in Al-Qaeda follow Sunni ideology.”

Al-Zawahiri later said, “Just as Allah commands us to pray, to go on the Hajj pilgrimage, and to adhere to monotheism, he commands us to wage Jihad and to implement the sharia. We want to fully implement the sharia, within legitimate constraints. We will not implement something if the time is not right, if it is bound to lead to undesirable or harmful results. We want to implement our religion as revealed in the sharia.

“Fighting Israel, fighting the Jews is a religious duty incumbent upon all,” he continued. “The Egyptian government should have been fighting the Jewish enemy. Perhaps due to circumstances – its weakness, its interests – the Egyptian government ignored a religious duty incumbent upon it. Not just the Egyptian government – the Jordanian one as well. This is a religious duty incumbent upon all Muslims.”

He also said that Egypt’s elections were “illegitimate”, adding that they violated sharia and saying, “Allah and the Prophet Muhammad said so. I am willing to sit down and discuss this with anyone who can prove otherwise.”

“I did not recognize the previous president, and I do not recognize this one. I recognize the rule of Islamic religious law,” concluded Al-Zawahiri.