Al-Qaeda-linked Syrian jihadists in latest issue of the al-Risala magazine denied any link to the killing of the Russian ambassador Andrey Karlov in Ankara, who was killed last month while giving a speech at an art gallery.
Mevlut Mert Altintas, an off-duty police officer, killed the Russian ambassador on 19 December. However, it remain unclear which group was behind the murder, or if the assassination was an individual act.
The al-Risala magazine published by jihadists closed to al-Qaeda in Syria suggest it was an individual act of revenge for the killing of Muslims by the Russians in Aleppo.
“Thus, contrary to the claims of the disbelievers, it is clear that Mevlüt (may Allãh have mercy on him and accept him) was responding to the cries of the oppressed Muslims of Syria. He did not belong to ISIS or Jabhatu An-Nusra or any other group operating in the region,” the magazine said.
“Rather, what is apparent from his speech and actions (as no one but Allãh has access to his heart) is that he had renounced his former profession and turned to his Lord in repentance. He stood up, not for any particular group or sect, but on behalf of the Ummah that has been suffering at the hands of its enemies for decades,” the jihadist al-Risala magazine added.
“As the tragedy in Aleppo unfolded, Russia remained as committed as ever to aiding the Syrian regime and her allies as they continued their massacre of the innocent Muslims of Aleppo, while arrogantly denying any wrongdoing on their part,” it suggested.
Turkish state media blamed the assassination of Karlov on the Fethullah Gulen sect that follows Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, who lives in exile in the United States. The Turkish authorities also blamed the Gulen movement for the failed military coup in July 2015.
Aymenn Jawad Al Tamimi, a research fellow at the Middle East Forum–a US think tank– told ARA News that it’s unlikely the killer had any links to militant groups. “He genuinely had no connection to them,” he said.
Reporting by: Wladimir van Wilgenburg | Source: ARA News
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