The brotherhood of terror

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 07 September, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 07 September, 2006, 12:00am

Al-Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiah are now infamous in the 'war on terror', but other groups also pose a threat:

Abu-Sayyaf Based in the southern Philippines, this small group is actively anti-Christian, and advocates ethnic cleansing of Christians. Its 700 members kidnap foreigners for ransom and it claimed responsibility for bombings including that of the Superferry 14 off the coast of Manila in February 2004, killing 116 people. Initially, Abu-Sayyaf had strong links to al-Qaeda. The current relationship is much less clear.

Al-Qaeda in Iraq Network created by the Jordanian Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, and led by him until he was killed by a US airstrike in June. Established at an Islamist militant training camp in Afghanistan with a focus on overthrowing Jordan's government, which Zarqawi considered un-Islamic. Its goals now are to force US-led forces out of Iraq, topple the government, marginalise the Shi'ite Muslims and establish a pure Sunni Islamic state.

Jaish-e-Mohammed Islamic extremist group based in Pakistan. The 'Army of Mohammad' aims to unite Kashmir with Pakistan, but it has also been blamed for a string of attacks in Pakistan, including attempts to kill President Pervez Musharraf. The group maintains close links with the Taleban. The Indian government has blamed the JEM for the attack on December 13, 2001, on the Indian Parliament that killed nine and injured 18.

The Moroccan Islamic Combatant Group An extremist Islamic group operating in North Africa. The group emerged in the late 1990s, apparently drawing on Moroccan jihadists who had fought or trained in Afghanistan for its 'warriors'. It has been associated with major terrorist attacks, including a 2003 attack in Casablanca that killed 30 people. The 2004 attack in Madrid that killed 191 was blamed on GICM offshoot Salafia Jihadia.