The Egyptian Islamist groups Ansar Beit al-Maqdis has pledged allegiance to the Islamic State in Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) according to The Guardian.
The report cites a nine-minute recording in which a member of the group says: “In accordance with the teachings of the Prophet, we announce our allegiance to the Caliphate, and call on Muslims everywhere to do the same.”
Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS, proclaimed himself the leader or caliph of an Islamic state or caliphate earlier this year and asked Muslims to pledge allegiance to him. It is not clear whether the announcement has anything other than symbolic value.
Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, who have been fighting the Egyptian state for more than three years from their bases in northern Sinai, is among the largest groups to have pledged allegiance to ISIS.
The group have carried out bombings in Egyptian cities as well as fighting an insurgency in the northern part of the Sinai peninsula.