(JNS.org) The Sinai-based terrorist group Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, which has been locked in an ongoing battle with the Egyptian military, in a Twitter message on Tuesday denied reports that it has pledged loyalty to the Islamic State.
“The statement that has been circulated in the media and is sourced to us, regarding the group’s declaration of allegiance to the Caliphate of the Muslims, [has] nothing to do with us,” said a tweet from a page that claims to be the official account of Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, Reuters reported.
Over the last few months, there has been speculation that the Sinai group has had increased contact and links with the Islamic State terror group. Several decapitated bodies have been found outside of towns in the Sinai, which has been a hallmark of Islamic State.
Meanwhile, officials from Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are exploring a regional military pact to confront Islamic extremists throughout the Middle East, and also to show unity against Iranian influence. A Gulf official said that those countries are currently discussing ways to handle the situations in Libya and Yemen as well as the “ongoing on wider cooperation on how to deal with extremists in the region,” the Associated Press reported.
Currently, Saudi Arabia and the UAE are involved in U.S.-led airstrikes against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq. Egypt and the UAE have also launched airstrikes against Islamic terrorists in Libya.