Did al-Qaida hit Kiryat Shemona?

IDF doubts group's claim of responsibility for Tuesday's attack.

al-qaida claim 298.88 (photo credit: alsaha.fares.net)
al-qaida claim 298.88
(photo credit: alsaha.fares.net)
Al-Qaida in Iraq said Thursday it was responsible for the Katyusha rocket attack on Kiryat Shemona two nights before, but experts are not so sure. "A group of al-Qaida lions planned ... a new attack on the Jewish state," the statement on an Islamist Web site said. "The brothers accomplished their mission as it was planned and succeeded in their escape." However, the IDF has blamed a Palestinian faction in Lebanon for the rocket attack, and bombed a base belonging to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - General Command. Terrorism expert Yoram Kahati is suspicious of this new claim, but until now, no group has taken credit for the three Katyushas that hit the northern town. "It needs to be looked at very carefully," Kahati said. There is an al-Qaida affiliate in Lebanon calling itself Usbat al-Ansar, and it is comprised of radical Sunni Palestinians from the Ayn al-Hilwah refugee camp in southern Lebanon. Also, on August 19, another al-Qaida grouplet going by the name the Abdallah Azzam Battalions did fire three Katyusha rockets from Aqaba. One of the rockets landed near Eilat's airport, while another narrowly missed an American ship and another hit a group of Jordanian soldiers, killed one. The same organization also claimed responsibility for attacks in Tabah, Sinai, and Sharm el-Sheikh.