The Army of Islam was formerly the biggest al-Qaida-affiliated group. It was founded and headed by members of the notorious Dughmush clan headed by Mumtaz and Abu Muhammad al-Ansari.
But following a massive Hamas crackdown on the Army of Islam last year, many of its members fled to smaller groups scattered throughout the Gaza Strip.
Abu Hamzeh al-Maqdisi, leader of the Ansar Assuna (Companions of the Sunnis), announced on Thursday that his group was determined to pursue efforts to establish an Islamic emirate in the Gaza Strip despite the Hamas clampdown.
Maqdisi told the London-based Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper that he did not rule out cooperation between his group and al-Qaida to achieve this goal.
Although Maqdisi, who is wanted by Hamas, denied that his group was part of al-Qaida, he did not rule out the possibility of working with it in the future.