(Reuters) ISIL is talking to Al-Qaeda about a possible alliance as Iraqi troops close in on ISIL terrorists in Mosul, Iraqi Vice President Ayad Allawi said in an interview on Monday.
Allawi said he got the information Monday from Iraqi and regional contacts knowledgeable about Iraq.
“The discussion has started now,” Allawi said. “There are discussions and dialogue between messengers representing Baghdadi and representing Zawahiri,” referring to ISIL leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi and Ayman al Zawahiri, the head of Al-Qaeda.
ISIL split from Al-Qaeda in 2014 and the two groups have since waged an acrimonious battle for recruits, funding and the mantle of global extremism.
It is unclear how exactly the two group may work together, Allawi said.