MOEZEDDINE GARSALLAOUI – ‘JUND AL-KHILAFAH’
Moezeddine Garsallaoui, born in 1969 in Tunisia, was a Swiss citizen. He was also the husband of Malika El-Aroud, the former wife of Dahmane Abd el-Sattar. After arriving in North Waziristan in late 2007, Moezeddine Garsallaoui is thought to have trained and fought with fighters loyal to Abu Laith al-Libi, the revered leader of Al Qaeda’s paramilitary organization, the Lashkar-a-Zil or Shadow Army. He was known to speak fluent Pashto, Arabic, German, French, and English.
Moez Garsallaoui’s associates in Al Qaeda have included Ghazwan al Yemeni, a protege of Midhat Mursi, known as Abu Khabab al Masri, Abu Jameelah al Kuwaiti Hamed al Aazimi, who served with slain al Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Musab al Zarqawi; Abu Zahra al Maghrebi and Akramah al Punjabi al Pakistani. The four operatives were killed along with two Haqqani Network fighters in Miranshah bazaar by a US Predator UAV airstrike in 03/2010.
Moez Garsallaoui, also known as Abu Moez al Tunisi, became the leader of a shadowy, ephemeral group ‘Jund al Khilafah’ or the Army of the Caliphate, affiliated to Al Qaeda and cooperated with the Pakistani ‘Tehrik-e-Taleban” – TTP. The groupt has conducted several attacks in Kazakhstan, in fall 2011 (see -Taraz 11.12.11), and has also released, in 2011, two videos of attacks against ISAF forces in Khost province, in Afghanistan. ‘Jund al Khilafah’ even claimed responsibility for the Toulouse Shootings in France, on 03/19/2012, and for training Mohammed Merah, the Toulouse shooter. Additionally Moez Garsallaoui aided in the kidnapping of two Swiss citizens in Baluchistan, on 07/02/2011. TTP had claimed to have kidnapped the couple, and has released two propaganda tapes of the Swiss citizens. In 03/2012, the couple escaped after having been held in captivity by the Taliban for over eight month. Moez Garsallaoui was also connected to Eric Breininger.
Moez Garsallaoui kept an eye on events in Tunisia despite being engrossed in operations along the Afghan-Pakistan border, and in Kazakhstan and France. In 11/2011, Moez Garsallaoui praised the victory of the Ennahda Movement (see – Ghannouchi’s Return), the branch of the Muslims Brotherhood in Tunisia.
Moezeddine Garsallaoui was killed by an American UAV missiles attack. on 10/15/2012, near Miranshah, North Waziristan, FATA region of Pakistan. North waziristan is considered a stronghold of Uzbek Jihadi volunteers already since the Russian presence in Afghanistan in the 80s’ of the 20th century.