The Islamic State has claimed the Las Vegas concert shooting which left more than 50 people dead and hundreds injured. However, US officials have said there is no known link to international terrorism. The Telegraph report.
The group claimed that the suspected gunman, Stephen Paddock, 64, converted to Islam a few months ago, through Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant’s official Amaq news channel.
They said the attack, the deadliest mass shooting in US history, was carried out by a ‘soldier’ of the caliphate and was done ‘in response to calls to target coalition countries.’
Isil often claims attacks by individuals inspired by its message but with no known links to the group.
The wording was similar to other claims made by Isil where attacks were inspired rather than directed by the jihadist group.
US officials have said they are examining the claim, but are yet to find any evidence linking the shooter, who fired as many as 300 rounds from a hotel room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel, to any organised terrorist group.
Police said Paddock, of Mesquite, Nevada, killed himself after the shooting and that there was reason to believe that he had a history of psychological problems.
“Despite popular opinion, they do not claim everything,” said Shiraz Maher, a lecturer in the Department of War Studies at King’s College London.
“They have not, for example, said anything about the Edmonton attack at this stage. By contrast, Marseille was claimed very quickly. When ISIS does claim something, there’s usually some degree of actual connection.”
Amarnath Amarasingam, a senior research fellow at the London-based Institute for Strategic Dialogue, told the Telegraph that the way in which Isil claims attacks was based on an established methodology.
“A lot of fighters I have asked were clear that there needs to be some connection, some contact and so on,” he said.
“This makes logical sense, because their claims have to have some legitimacy. Their news agencies require credibility like any news agency.
“What I think is happening these days are that the linkages are getting sloppier and less rigorous.”
He pointed to claims of responsibility which later turned out to be false, including of an attack at a casino in the Philippines in June which police maintain was a indebted gambler with no link to the group.
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