CAIRO (AP) — Al-Qaida's deputy leader, Ayman al-Zawahri, has issued his first message since the upheaval began in Egypt, saying the country's rule has long "deviated from Islam."
Al-Zawahri, an Egyptian, makes no mention of the wave of protests in Egypt or the toppling last week of longtime leader Hosni Mubarak in the 34-minute video, which the U.S.-based monitoring group SITE says was posted on Islamic militant websites Friday.
Instead, he gives a lecture on Egypt's modern history, blaming Western colonialists for implanting secular, un-Islamic law. He says "the reality of Egypt is the reality of deviation from Islam" and denounces democracy in general as "non-religious." The video is dated to an Islamic month that corresponds with the dates Jan. 5-Feb. 3.
© Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.