The Emir of the Caucasus Emirate group has called the recent pledges of allegiance to Islamic State by the former leader of Vilayat Dagestan an “an act of treachery.”
In a video address released on December 28, Ali Abu Mukhammad warned other CE militants in Dagestan and elsewhere not to participate in the “fitna” and not to provide assistance to those who call for a split in the ranks of the CE.
Ali Abu Mukhammad’s video address comes in the wake of a series of pledges of allegiance to IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi by Dagestani militants formerly of the CE.
The video address also follows increasingly bitter infighting between North Caucasians in Islamic State in Syria, led by a group close to Umar Shishani and particularly a militant named Abu Jihad, an ethnic Karachay identified as Islam Atabiyev, who has released a number of video addresses criticizing the Caucasus Emirate.
Rivalry between North Caucasian factions of IS in Syria and the CE began as far back as late summer 2013 when Umar Shishani and his faction in Jaish al-Muhajireen wal-Ansar grew closer to then-ISIS, with Umar being appointed ISIS’s military emir in northern Syria. Umar and his faction broke away from JMA in December 2013 and went over to ISIS, with JMA openly aligning itself as the Syrian branch of the CE.
Since then, the rivalry between the two groups in Syria has continued to develop, based in the main on a power struggle for control of North Caucasian militants in Syria but also partly based on ideology: some IS North Caucasians have accused the CE of nationalism and asserted that, with the establishment of the “Caliphate”, all jihadis should fight with IS.
Ali Abu Mukhammad said:
Our position in the Caucasus is not an exception. That which we noticed in the past days is proof of that. That is that the Emir of Vilayat Dagestan gave a bay’ah to Abu Bakr Baghdadi. Wallahi brothers, we know this man very well.
Ali Abu Mukhammad criticizes the former Emir of Vilayat Dagestan for his lack of Islamic knowledge.
“In no address did this brother give any quotes or citatations from the Quran or Hadith, or the scholars – does this not show the lack of knowledge of this man?”
He then addresses the former Emir,
“What happened to you, brother? Maybe it was the instigation of Satan?… Or did you get knowledge from the Quran… confirming the correctness of your decisions? Who advised you when you took such a decision? If you had such dazzling knowledge why didn’t you show it to your brothers? One can close one’s eyes to a lot, but not to treachery… You, brother, betrayed your brothers at the very time that they needed you most…. You have caused a schism in our jamaat… If you want to wage jihad with Baghdadi, go join him and leave us in peace… You, brother, have gone astray with that oath of allegiance to Baghdadi. If you say not, then I invite you to a discussion. We will meet you anywhere… maybe you have knowledge. Maybe you know something we don’t. But we are ready to accept the truth whoever it comes from. In order to understand and make conclusions, who is right, Abu Bakr Baghdadi or Al Qaeda, Zawahiri, Mullah Omar and all the rest of those who are well known there needs to be knowledge of Sharia, but you don’t have that knowledge…. and that again testifies to your hypocrisy…”
The CE Emir says that those who pledged to IS have “пластиковые мозги” – “plastic brains”.
Ali Abu Mukhammad then moves on to discuss Abu Mukhammad Agachaul’skyi of the Shamil’kalinsky sector.
“I know only the good side of that brother and we hope that he rethinks his decision and asks those in the know….and we address the Muslims of the Vilayat Dagestan, that that they do not assist those brothers and this fitna. Those who do help them will be judged by the people and later before Allah on Judgement Day. O, my brothers of the Caucasus Emirate. You are not authorized to work with those brothers because they betrayed us and went over to Baghdadi’s side voluntarily… In front of you are two paths. Either you can go with those jahilis like Abu Mukhammad and his ilk, or with the scholars without exception, all the well known scholars that we have until now respected and followed, they are on the other side.”
Ali Abu Mukhammad appointed a new Emir for Vilayat Dagestan, Said Arakanskiy.