Two of Al Qaeda’s spiritual leaders have said that the terror organization is barely functioning after losing money and manpower to the rapidly rising Islamic State group, according to a report.
Abu Qatada and Abu Muhammad al-Maqdisi have described Al Qaeda as being without “organizational structure,” the Guardian reports. Maqdisi said Al Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri is isolated from his top lieutenants and “operates solely based on the allegiance.
“There is no organizational structure. There is only communication channels, and loyalty,” he reportedly said.
Qatada, who was deported to Jordan from Britain in 2013 to face terrorism charges, also acknowledges that ISIS has gotten the better of Al Qaeda in the propaganda wars as well as those fought on the battlefield.
The Guardian report traces the beginning of Al Qaeda’s downfall to the ascension of Zawahiri as Al Qaeda’s leader following the death of Usama bin Laden in May 2011. While Zawahiri has been forced to move in secret in the remote mountain regions along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, hundreds of thousands of militants have flocked to the new battlefields in Syria and Iraq.
Read More: Al Qaeda leaders say group near collapse amid rise of ISIS, report claims | Fox News