Hunted by U.S. drones and Yemeni authorities, one of the world’s most wanted Islamic terrorist leaders on Monday issued a new video message calling on extremists to ignore the anti-terrorism edicts of Muslim religious authorities and continue their holy war against America and Israel.
In the 23-minute video, American-born al Qaeda cleric Anwar al-Awlaki also warns repeatedly of the danger posed to Sunni Arab Muslims by the rise of Iranian Shiite power in the Middle East.
Posted on an extremist website, the video shows Mr. al-Awlaki seated and speaking in Arabic. Mr. Al-Awlaki is thought to be hiding in Yemen, from where al Qaeda last month sent package bombs to the United States, but the video appears to have been recorded before that plot was discovered because he does not refer to it.
In the video, Mr. al-Awlaki, who was declared a wanted man by a Yemeni court over the weekend, urges Muslims to ignore the edicts, or fatwas, of religious scholars.
“One should not consult anyone in the matter of killing the Americans,” he says, according to a translated transcript provided to The Washington Times by the SITE Intelligence Group, a company that monitors extremists’ messages.
“Combating the devil does not require a fatwa, nor consultation, nor does it require prayer to Allah,” he says, calling the fight between extremists and the United States “a fateful battle … the battle of good and evil.”
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