“Officials called into question the claim of responsibility for the attack from al-Qaeda’s jihadist rival, the Islamic State group.” Much more is made of this “rivalry” than there actually is: the Islamic State and al-Qaeda share the same beliefs, motives and goals.
“Tunisia arrests 23 in ‘terrorist cell’ over museum attack,” AFP, March 26, 2015:
TUNIS, March 26, (AFP): Tunisia said Thursday that it had arrested 23 suspects in connection with last week’s jihadist massacre at the country’s national museum. “Twenty-three suspects including a woman have been arrested as part of a terrorist cell” involved in the attack, Interior Minister Najem Gharsalli told journalists, adding that “80 percent of this cell” had been broken up. All of those arrested were Tunisians, he said, adding that another Tunisian, two Moroccans and an Algerian suspected of being members of the cell were on the run. The Tunisian, Maher Ben Mouldi Kaidi, was previously identified as a suspect and is alleged to have provided the automatic weapons to the two gunmen who shot dead 21 people — including 20 foreign tourists — at the Bardo Museum in Tunis on March 18.
The head of the cell was among those arrested and was identified as Mohamed Emine Guebli. But the minister said the operation was organised by an Algerian jihadist named Lokmane Abou Sakhr, one of the leaders of the al-Qaeda-linked Okba Ibn Nafaa Brigade, the main Tunisian armed group active along the border with Algeria. Officials called into question the claim of responsibility for the attack from al-Qaeda’s jihadist rival, the Islamic State group. “Islamic State praised this attack for propaganda and publicity. But on the ground it was Okba Ibn Nafaa which belongs to al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, that organised and committed this crime,” interior ministry spokesman Mohamed Ali Aroui told AFP. AQIM has not responded since IS claimed responsibility for the attack, which would be its first in Tunisia….