London, Asharq Al-Awsat- Dr. Abdul Latif Bin Khalid Al Mousa AKA Abu Noor al-Maqdisi was the leader of the Salafist Takirist Jihadist group Jund Ansar Allah [Soldiers of the Companions of God].
Al-Maqdisi was born in the Gaza Strip and was said to be fifty years old at the time of his death. He studied in the Gaza Strip education system, completing his secondary school education in the late 1970s where he was particularly noted for excellence the field of science.
Al-Maqdisi joined the University of Alexandria’s Faculty of Medicine in 1979 where he went on to achieve a doctorate in family heath. During this time, Al-Maqdisi also met a number of prominent Alexandrian Sheikhs including; Sheikh Said Abdul Azeem, Sheikh Mohamed Bin Ismail al-Muqaddim, Sheikh Ahmed Fareed, and Sheikh Hamd Ibrahim.
Al-Maqdisi later worked as a teacher for five years at the “Ahl Al Hadith Al Sharif Centre” which is affiliated to the “Jam’iyat Dar Al Kitab Wa Al Sunna [the Association of the Books and Traditions of the Prophet]”, in the city of Khan Yunis in the Southern Gaza Strip.
Al-Maqdisi worked as a preacher for the “Ahl Al Sunnah” mosque in Khan Yunis for 15 years.
Following this, he worked as the preacher for the Egyptian/Palestinian “Nour Ala Al Hadoud” mosque for a period of 18 months.
After this mosque was destroyed by the Israeli army in 2006, Al-Maqdisi became the preacher and imam of the “Sheikh Al Salam Bin Taymiyah” mosque until the time of his death. Al-Maqdisi also served as the Director of Medicine of the Rafah Martyrs Medical Centre.
Al-Maqdisi wrote a number of books including a book on the issue of faith entitled “Al Yaqout Wa Al Morgan Fi Aqeeda Ahl Al Iman” [The Ruby and Corral of the Faith of the Believers] and “Al Tareeq Al Sawi Fi Iftiqah Asr Al Nabi” [The Straight Way for Following the Way of the Prophet].
There are also a number of recording attributed to al-Maqdisi in which he explains the issue of faith.
Al-Maqdisi cemented his position as a mufti of international standing with his final book “As’illa Wa Agwiba Sharia Hawl Al Qadiyah Al Filistaniyah” [Juristic Questions and Answers Regarding the Palestinian Cause]. This book was published by the Beit al-Maqdis Publishing House, and was praised by Sheikh Mohamed Safwat Nour Al Din.
Jund Ansar Allah was set up as an armed Salafsit Takrifist Jihadist group in Southern Gaza in November 2008. The group believes the Hamas movement that controls the Gaza Strip is too liberal, and wishes to implement Islamic Sharia law throughout Palestine.
The group initially only operated in its birthplace of Rafah and Khan Yunis, although its operations later spread throughout the Gaza Strip. Prior to the recent raid that resulted in al-Maqdisi’s death, Jund Ansar Allah claimed to have up to 500 fighters, including a number of foreign nationals.
According to the group’s website, Jund Ansar Allah has carried out a number of minor attacks against Israel over the past year. The group came to the public’s attention after it launched a daring but unsuccessful suicide attack on horseback against the Israeli Karni Border Crossing. The only casualties of this attack were three members of the Jund Ansar Allah.
The group has also been blamed for several internet café bombings throughout the Gaza Strip, as well as an attack on a wedding party attended by relatives of Fatah leader, Mohamed Dahlan. Jund Ansar Allah has denied the latter attack which Fatah blame on Hamas.
The recent crackdown on the group which resulted in the death of the Jund Ansar Allah group took place after al-Maqdisi announced the establishment of Palestine as an Islamic Emirate along with his belief that Hamas are a secular movement that has falsely laid claim to Islam.