The Al Nusrah Front prepares the suicide bomb used in the Nov. 5 attack in Hama. Image courtesy of the SITE Intelligence Group.
The Al Nusrah Front for the People of the Levant, an al Qaeda-linked jihadist group that is fighting Bashir al Assad’s regime in Syria, has claimed credit for last week’s suicide attack in Hama that killed more than 50 Syrian soldiers. The terror group claimed the attack in a statement that was released on jihadist internet forums. The statement was translated by the SITE Intelligence Group.
Al Nusrah said the suicide bomber was named Abu al Qa’qa’ al Shamali, and that he attacked a “rural development center” that was being used as a base for Syrian forces. The statement alleged that the bomb was built from “the remnants of 4 Syrian Air Force rockets.” According to the SITE translation:
After the preparation of a car with a 3.5 ton [bomb], the hero went and broke into the Nusayri villages that connect to the building, and he reached the target and blew up the building. The body parts were seen at a distance of over 100m.
Al Nusrah also claimed that more than 200 government forces were killed in the blast. News reports indicated that 50 of Assad’s troops were killed.
The Al Nusrah Front has been the most active jihadist group in Syria. It has claimed credit for 32 of the 40 known suicide bombings in Syria that the The Long War Journal has tallied since December 2011. Since the end of August, Al Nusrah has claimed credit for launching 14 suicide attacks. For more information on the suicide attacks in Syria, see LWJ report, Suicide bombings become commonplace in Syria, and Threat Matrix report, Al Nusrah Front claims 4 more suicide attacks in Syria.
The last reported suicide attack in Syria took place on Nov. 10, when a pair of suicide bombers attacked government troops in Daraa, near the Jordanian border. Al Nusrah has neither claimed credit nor denied responsibility for the Daraa attack.