Syria-based Jihadists have vowed to retake Spain - "the land of our ancestors" - in a video shot in Castilian Spanish that emerged on YouTube from a Syrian pro-government account.

In the footage, a young fighter introduces another "friend and brother" saying that "we're going to speak in Spanish". The second militant, wearing a kefiah scarf around his head, says:

"We are in the Holy Land [Syria], the land of Islam and I tell and warn everyone: we are living under the Islamic flag and we will die for it until we open those locked lands from Jakarta to Andalusia. And I say: Spain is the land of our ancestors and we will open it with the power of Allah".

The claims bear similarities to those of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Isis), which declared an Islamic "caliphate" straddling the area between Syria to Iraq, with leader (or caliph) Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

In a Ramadan message, the self-appointed caliph of the Muslim world urged the faithful to embrace jihad, claiming Islamist fighters will one day conquer Rome, the capital of Christianity.

The speech marked the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which started last week and celebrates the revelation of the Quran to Prophet Muhammad.

It came after Isis conquered large swathes of Iraq and Syria and announced they have established an Islamic caliphate, extending from the Syrian city of Aleppo to Diyala province in eastern Iraq.

It is unclear whether the two Spanish-speaking jihadists in the video belong to Isis. Experts say they speak Spanish with a heavy North African accent.

In June, eight people were arrested in the Spanish North African enclave of Ceuta on suspicion of recruiting jihadist fighters to go to Syria. They were suspected of funding, indoctrinating and facilitating travel for would-be fighters. All detainees are Spanish citizens.

Last year three people from Ceuta who went to fight in Syria were killed in separate battles.

The existence of foreign combatants amongst those fighting the government of Bashar al-Assad is causing anxiety in Western countries, as well as in Syria itself.

The EU counter-terrorism coordinator Gilles de Kerchove told the BBC that an estimated 500 Europeans were fighting with rebel forces in Syria.

The Iberian peninsula was invaded and conquered by Muslim forces in 711. The occupation culminated in the Umayyad Caliphate of Cordova in the tenth century. Muslim rule declined after that and ended in 1492 when Granada was conquered.The heartland of Muslim rule was Southern Spain or Andalusia.

Al Qaeda Splinter Group Declares Islamic ‘Caliphate’
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