Islamic State (ISIS) seemingly has prioritized plans of attacking prisons and has called upon Muslims in “Indian Subcontinent” and Africa to join this notorious Islamist militancy outfit, the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) said in a report.
According to MEMRI, on September 13, 2022, Al-Furqan, the media arm of the Islamic State (ISIS) Central Command released an audio message by the group’s spokesman, Abu ‘Umar Al-Muhajir.
Titled, “And hold fast, all of you together, to the Rope of Allah [i.e., Quran], and be not divided among yourselves,” the speech praised recent prison breaks conducted by ISIS operatives in Nigeria on July 5 and another in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) on August 10, highlighting that these raids were carried out based on directives issued by ISIS leadership. Lauding ISIS operatives, particularly in West and Central Africa provinces, the spokesman called on freed prisoners to “return to righteousness” and join the ranks of ISIS.
Capitalizing on local grievances, ISIS’s spokesman further called on Muslims in East and Central Asia, the Indian subcontinent, and Africa in general to join the organization in order to defend their religion, noting that the U.S. and Western powers are expanding their war on Islam and using local regimes to act against Muslims.
The spokesman began the address by praising operatives for taking part in establishing the Islamic State, reinforcing it, and spreading monotheism and shari’a law in group-controlled territories and beyond.
Underlining the significance of jihad from a religious perspective, the spokesman cited a saying by Prophet Muhammad calling for a continuous fight until all the people in the world become Muslims. Al-Muhajir stressed that ISIS will never abandon its course no matter how many opponents or traitors it may face.
“We shall not be harmed by those who disagree with us or those who will let us down. We shall rule every cubit by shari’a, in spite of the infidels, whom we will bring forcefully to the pools of death. We shall remain mujahedeen who support the banner of jihad, until monotheism prevails around the world. We will support our brothers in religion and free those who are captured,” he said in poem.
Prison breaks are top priority
Discussing prison breaks, Al-Muhajir congratulated the Islamic nation, and particularly ISIS operatives in West Africa for their bravery in breaking into Kuje Prison, southwest of Abuja, the capital of Nigeria. Likewise, he praised ISIS operatives in Central Africa who destroyed the wall of a prison in the eastern Congolese city of Butembo.
He then assured Muslims that ISIS “lions and knights” are determined to not leave behind even one Muslim captive in the prisons of taghouts (tyrants).
“Prisons will remain our first target until we free all our brothers and sisters, with the permission and power of Allah,” he vowed.
Stressing his appreciation of the group’s operatives in West and Central Africa, Al-Muhajir noted that their bravery is exceptional, because it comes amid an escalating military campaign launched against them to deter their advancement.
ISIS leadership kept its word
While emphasizing that freeing Muslim prisoners is a religious obligation, Al-Muhajir also underlined that the recent prison break operations are a fulfillment of the promises made by ISIS leadership. He thanked ISIS operatives for translating those promises into actions, praying that Allah will grant them more power and victories.
Addressing ISIS operatives in the other regions, Al-Muhajir called on them to follow in the footsteps of their brothers in Africa, urging them to launch similar attacks on prisons.
Freed prisoners should join ISIS
Addressing freed prisoners who have not joined ISIS, the spokesman said: “You have experienced the bitterness of imprisonment and the oppression of tyrants. You have seen their kufr and their spite towards Muslims — so show your support for your brothers the mujahideen, unite with them in their war against infidels. Seek to free what is left of your brothers in prisons”.
To freed prisoners who are siding with ISIS’s enemies, the spokesman said: “We have left you alone to give you a chance to re-examine yourselves and return to sanity.” He added that ISIS looks forward to welcome them into its ranks, warning that if they do not join, ISIS will have to fight them.
Addressing Muslim prisoners everywhere, the spokesman renewed ISIS’s promise to free them, saying: “Our actions will prove to you our honesty and determination”.
“The US is vulnerable; Crusaders are coming after Muslims”
Calling on Muslims around the world to pursue jihad with ISIS, Al-Muhajir argued that the U.S. is no longer a mighty State, warning Muslims that Western powers are expanding their war on Islam and using local regimes to do so.
“To the Islamic nation and its children: what are you waiting for? The infidels have divided themselves into a communist Eastern camp and a capitalist Western camp; the infidels are fighting over the leadership of the world; and the communist countries, small and large, are defying America — yet no one has [successfully] broken off its sting, except for the mujahideen”.
Warning that the “Crusaders” will come after all Muslims, he said: “You will not be distant from the war. The worshipers of the cross will drag the tyrants who rule your countries into this war, whether they like it or not”.
Capitalizing on local grievances
The spokesman then called on all Muslims to wage jihad, particularly those in east Asia, the Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, India, Bengal, and Pakistan, saying they should not be scared or feel vulnerable, because they are many.
“We realize that you are weak, but you are not a minority, there are as many of you as the stars [in the sky]. But you are less determined and firm, and you have been consumed by fear and a lack of courage to support the religion of Allah and fight His enemies. So, join your brothers, the mujahideen in the Islamic State, and help them in their fight against the Hindus, the communists, the infidels, and the apostates of your people.”
Al-Muhajir addressed Sunni Muslims in Africa, urging them to join ISIS to maintain the victories achieved by ISIS operatives over the Christians. “And let the Christians live in terror, from which their hearts will stop, and the hair of their children will turn grey, by Allah’s permission”, he said.
Situation in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Egypt, Khurasan
In his 36-minute speech, the spokesman also addressed the people of Syria, sympathizing with their suffering under the Syrian regime and other “so-called” Islamic groups and sahwat (pro-government forces and other armed factions including those backed by Turkey.) He called on Syrians to join ISIS, saying it is the most qualified group for fighting the Syrian regime.
Discussing the situation in Iraq, the spokesman made a reference to recent infighting among Shi’ite factions in Iraq, calling on Sunnis to break away from them and rejoin the “banner of the State of Islam”.
Similarly, he claimed that ISIS is the best line of defense for Yemenis in their fight against the Houthis, citing an ISIS suicide attack on July 10 in Al-Bayda province as evidence.
Speaking of Egypt, Al-Muhajir praised “the lions of Sinai,” noting that they have been the targets of massive attacks launched by the Egyptian army and local tribes.
He further heaped praise on “the knights of Khurasan,” saying they launched attack that destabilize “the rule of the Taliban,” which he denounced for their rapprochement with Afghan Shi’ites.
Rejecting democracy, boasting of ISIS’s vast resources
Al-Muhajir then spoke against nationalism and democracy, using terms similar to those used by Al-Qaeda: “Today in the Islamic State we are fighting under a clear and unequivocal banner, in which we do not differentiate between Muslims in the way national tyrants do, who call for ethnic [divisions] and regionalism, and name Muslims by pre-Islamic names, sympathize with each other based on tribal fanaticism, and outline their countries with imaginary borders”.
Concluding, the spokesman lauded ISIS’s military and media capabilities on all fronts, saying: “Oh people, today, by the grace of Allah, we have invading battalions on the battle fronts, companies that carry out assassinations, and media outlets on all platforms. We invite you to Allah, day and night, secretly and openly. […] Oh Allah, free our brothers and sisters from prison; Oh Allah, support your monotheistic servants, support the State of the Muslims, and raise, Oh Lord, the word of religion”.