Al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahri has issued guidelines for jihad, urging restraint in attacking other Muslim sects and non-Muslims.
The document gives a rare look at al Qaeda's strategy 12 years after the September 11 attacks on the United States .
According to Dawn News, the document, published by the SITE monitoring service, Zawahri stressed the importance of 'dawa', or missionary work, to spread its ideas.
Zawahri also mentioned where conflict was inevitable, including Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Somalia.
In Pakistan, he said fighting 'aims at creating a safe haven for the mujahideen in Pakistan, which can then be used as a launching pad for the struggle of establishing an Islamic system,' the report said.
According to the report, Zawahri called on his mainly Salafist followers  to avoid attacking other Muslim sects, and said if they were attacked, they should limit their response to those involved in fighting.
He also asked in followers to not attack Christians, Hindus and Sikhs living in Muslim lands, respect the lives of women and children and refrain from targeting enemies in mosques, markets and gatherings where they mix with Muslims, the report added.