Al Qa'eda-linked group in rocket attack on Israel

A group linked to al Qa'eda claims responsibility for a rocket salvo from Lebanon into Israel, a group that monitors jihadist websites says.

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A group linked to al Qa'eda has claimed responsibility for last week's rocket salvo from Lebanon into Israel, a US-based group that monitors jihadist websites said today. The attack from south Lebanon into northern Israel was claimed by the Brigades of Abdullah Azzam, Battalions of Ziad Jarrah, in a statement today by the Al-Fajr Media Centre on jihadist forums, the SITE Intelligence Group said. According to SITE, the statement said the rocket fire had been in response to "flagrant hostility" displayed by Israel towards Palestinians and Muslims.

At least two rockets fired from the village of al Qlaileh in southern Lebanon slammed into Israel on Friday, triggering retaliatory artillery fire. No casualties were reported on either side in the attack, the third this year. A UN official in Lebanon said at the weekend that extremists tied to Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon may have been behind the attack. "My understanding is that [the investigations] are focusing on the extremist groups that might be linked to the refugee camps," Milos Strugar, political adviser for the UN force stationed in Lebanon (UNIFIL), said.

Israel has lodged a complaint with the United Nations over the attack and the prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday said Israel held the Lebanese government responsible for rocket fire from its territory. Abdullah Azzam was al Qa'eda chief Osama bin Laden's mentor. He was killed in a 1989 bomb blast. Ziad Jarrah, from Lebanon, was one of the plotters of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States which destroyed the twin towers of the World Trade Centre in New York and killed nearly 3,000 people.

Jarrah is believed to have been one of the hijackers of United Airlines Flight 93, which crashed into Pennsylvania, killing all aboard. * AFP