Egypt Independent

Al-Azhar says Islamic State backed by Western agencies



Islamic State militants are backed by Western agencies seeking to divide the Middle East and the Islamic World, said the Grand Sheikh of Al-Azhar on Monday. 
 
Al-Azhar is the most respected Sunni Muslim institution in the Islamic World. Grand Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb said he supports President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s proposal for a joint Arab defense force to combat extremist militias who are fighting to establish an Islamic Caliphate.
 
The Sheikh's remarks came during a meeting in Cairo with Saudi Arabia’s Deputy Minister of Islamic Affairs, Tawfiq al-Sudairi.
 
The IS has been notorious for videos showing its members beheading foreign workers and journalists in Syria and Iraq. A video of the beheadings of 21 Egyptians in Libya mid-February prompted Egypt’s government to launch air strikes against the group’s camps in eastern Libya.
 
 
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm