Friday, 20 March 2015

ISIS fighter Sultan Armar dies in Kobani

Isis Recruit Killed in Syria Identified as Armar Belonged to Bhatkal: Intelligence

By Neha Singh Updated: March 20, 2015 16:40 IST

Intelligence reports have reportedly revealed that one of two Indian Isis recruits, who died fighting for the terrorist group in the city of Kobani along the Syria-Turkey border earlier this month, was from Karnataka's Bhatkal town.
The Intelligence sources told The Indian Express that "Abu Abdullah al-Hindi" has been identified as 39-year-old Sultan Abdul Kadir Armar and he belongs to Bhatkal. Armar died fighting for the jihadists in the Kobani city of Syria on 6 March.

The news of his death was first reported by the Indian jihadist group Ansar al-Tauhid fi'Bilad al-Hind in a statement released on Thursday that said, "His intense urge to establish Islam and the pathetic condition of the Muslim Ummah (nation) forced him to leave behind his loved ones, seeking Allah's pleasure and eternal paradise."
Later on Saturday, 14 March, one of the Isis Twitter handler 'Magnet gas' tweeted photographs of the jihadist along with his messages, that revealed their hatred towards Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the 2002 Gujarat riots, in which thousands were killed, mostly Muslims.

"Abu abdullah al hindi 'Not one lion of india to kill the devil Modi who massacre so many muslims in Gujrat'," Magnet Gas tweeted along with his pictures. The other Indian jihadist he was talking about was named "Abu Uthman al-Hindi."
Who was Armar?

Armar was born on 7 December 1975 to a small business man Shabbir Husain Armar and grew up in Nawayath Colony of Bhatkal and studied at the renowned Islamic seminary Nadwat-ul-Ullema.Shafi Armar is the second among the three children of the family. Later in 2004, Armar along with his brother Shafi Armar joined the Indian Mujahideen (IM). He came to the wanted list of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) after they arrested the founder of IM and alleged mastermind of Pune's German Bakery bomb blasts, Yasin Bhatkal, in August 2013.

Armar had already left India and had taken refuge in Pakistan where he joined a group of IM operatives but later he severed all ties with the IM and formed his own terror outfit – Isis-affiliated Ansar al-Tauhid. He was believed to have appeared in videos, with face digitally masked, asking Indian Muslims to join Ansar al-Tauhid and wage a war in the name of jihad. In one of the speeches, he said, "Rise like Ahmad Shah Abdali and Muhammad ibn-Qasim, like Syed Ahmad the martyr, like the Prophet and his companions, take the Quran in one hand and the sword in the other, and head to the fields of jihad," IE reported.

He urged the newly recruited members of terror organisation to "teach these Brahmins and worshippers of cows, as well as the whole world of unbelievers, that the Indian Muslim is no coward."

Hailing from the same place, both Shafi and Sultan were taken into the IM by Riyaz Bhatkal. While Sultan was active in IM operations, Shafi was more of a second in command for the operations undertaken by his brother.
Shafi does not have any record of taking part in terrorist activities in the real sense. His activities were online and he was in charge of the media operations. A lot of literature concerning the ISIS posted on the Ansar site were said to be the handiwork of Shafi.
Currently his location is unclear. His family members in Bhatkal say that he and Sultan left home around 5 years back and they have no idea about their whereabouts.

The visit to Pakistan and the big break up

When for the first time, Riyaz Bhatkal had roped in the Armar brothers, they were called to Pakistan. At Pakistan it was decided that the Armar brothers would go to Oman set up a base and then focus on Indian recruitments.
However an argument broke out over certain issues relating to Iqbal, the elder brother of Riyaz Bhatkal. The Armar brothers found that a sum of Rs 60 crore given to the Bhatkal brothers to carry out terror activities was misappropriated and not being put to the right use.
Further the Armar brothers also raised objections about Iqbal being involved in an illicit affair. They felt that this was anti Islam and objected to the same. A fight broke out and the Armar brothers decided to split. These incidents have been narrated to the police by Yasin Bhatkal who is presently in jail.
The Armar brothers then spoke with Yasin who was in India and told him about their intentions of breaking up with the IM. They said that they would want to shift loyalties to either the Al-Qaeda or the ISIS which had real concern about the religious cause.

The journey into the ISIS
After breaking away from the IM, the Armar brothers decided to join the Al-Qaeda. However at that point in time, the ISIS was growing fast and they felt that this outfit was a better bet. Also the fading prospects of the Al-Qaeda was another reason for them to consider the ISIS.
Both the brothers then went up online and began posting literature for the ISIS. They managed to get the attention of the top rung of the ISIS and one fine day as the Global Islamic Council was announced the Armar brothers became the choice for the ISIS. The Ansar-ul-Tawhid was floated and while Sultan decided that he wanted to battle along with the ISIS, Shafi decided to carry out activities online.

The Madhya Pradesh module:
It is for the first time that the name of Shafi has been attached to such a major case. A couple of youth were arrested in Rajasthan, Shafi's name had cropped up briefly and the NIA felt that it was he who had carried out these recruitments.
When the module at Ratlam, Madhya Pradesh was busted a couple of days back, Shafi's name cropped up prominently. The members of the module headed by Irfan Khan said that he was in touch with Shafi and it is together that they planned a series of attacks in India.
The intention was to launch the first dedicated module in India for the ISIS. All these days the ISIS has only been recruiting out of India, but by setting up a dedicated module, they felt that they could boost up the recruitment drive.
According to Shafi, the module would provide the right platform for those youth who believed in the ISIS ideology but did not wish to travel to either Iraq or Syria. IntelligenceBureau officials feel that Shafi has taken the mantle from his brother Sultan who was killed last month in a combat at Kobane in Syria.
The location of Shafi is still a puzzle. In the past five years, he has been traced to Pakistan, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia and Oman.

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