Black Flag of Tawheed has been raised in Libya

In another act of defiance, militants loyal to the Islamic State have captured the Libyan city of Derna home to about 70 000 people. The swift victory has sent shockwaves throughout the West who seem to have no answer against these battle hardened Islamists who believe they have God on their side.

The civil war which followed Gaddafi’s ouster from power has taken a dangerous turn with the notorious Islamic State capturing a city which is just 2 hours away from Tobruk, the seat of the central government. The capture is a setback for coalition efforts to curtail the spread of the Islamic State with airstrikes and it serves as an indication of the Islamic State’s influence amongst Muslims throughout the world. With the fall of Derna, the Jihadi’s have spread their territory across the two continents of West Asia and North Africa.

The Islamic State claims that the citizens of Derna are now part of the Caliphate and have sworn allegiance to the Caliph, Sheikh Abu Bakr al Baghdadi. The Islamic State has named the captured territory as part of the state’s “Barqa” province. It is estimated that about 800 armed to the teeth Islamists attacked Derna, atleast 300 of the force are said to have been veterans of the highly successful Mosul campaign.

Libyan General Khalifa Haftar’s secular militia which are funded and backed by the Gulf monarchies and the Americans face an enemy which has yet to taste defeat in battle and has momentum on its side. Control of Derna effectively cuts the link between Tobruk and the city of Benghazi, which is a major battle ground between General Haftar and the Islamists.

The Islamic State announced the victory in the following words:

“The sons of the Islamic State in Derna resolved to take revenge on all who participated with, supported or aided Heftar in his war on our mujahideen brothers in Benghazi […] In support of our mujahideen brothers in Benghazi, a great convoy of the lions of the Caliphate came out to cut off the path and resist a great convoy coming out from Tobruq with 15 tanks headed towards Benghazi. On the arrival of the Dawla’s vanguards to cut off the reinforcements, the apostates heard of the arrival of the Islamic State’s convoy, so they sent in their aircraft and returned to Tobruq. And the Islamic State’s convoy returned safely, having accomplished its mission.”