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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Al-Qaida In Iraq Ridicules the Madrid Anti-Terror Conference

CAIRO, Egypt -- A militant group calling itself Al-Qaida In Iraq ridiculed an international terrorism conference in Spain held to mark the first anniversary of deadly train bombings there, telling the nations who had gathered they "would never be victorious."

"You infidels, whatever you prepare, you will be defeated and never be victorious because Allah has promised us victory. So you have only to wait ... and we will be waiting too," said a statement purportedly posted by the group on an extremist Islamic web site on Saturday.

The four-day international conference in Madrid ended Friday after marking the one-year anniversary of al-Qaida train bombings in the capital that killed 191 people and wounded more than 1,500. It was attended by former heads of state and experts from some 50 countries and produced the "Madrid Agenda," designed to help shape and coordinate world counterterrorism efforts.

The militants devoted special pages on the web site to the anniversary of Spain's worst terrorist attack.

"Lest we forget. The first brilliant anniversary of Madrid attack. Here where we accept congratulations," the web site page said. It reissued statements by a group named after Abu Hafs al-Masri, a former top lieutenant of al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden, that claimed responsibility for the attack to protest the presence of Spanish troops in Iraq.

Another page heaped scorn on Mansur Escudero, leader of the Islamic Commission of Spain and author of a fatwa, or Islamic edict, declaring bin Laden an apostate unworthy of his faith. The fatwa claimed support from Muslim leaders in Morocco -- home to most of the 22 jailed suspects in the Madrid attack -- as well as Algeria and Libya.