Hay’at Tahrir al Sham (HTS), the most powerful jihadist organization in Idlib province, has finally issued a statement addressing the agreement reached between Turkey and Russia last month. HTS vows to continue waging jihad, and warns that it doesn’t trust Russia’s “intentions,” but does not directly repudiate the Sochi accord.
Five groups, including al Qaeda’s rebranded branch, have announced the creation of a new group in Syria. The move comes after weeks of reported disagreements and clashes between the insurgents in northern Syria.
More than 20 jihadist, Islamist and other rebel organizations took part in the offensive to break the siege of Aleppo. It was likely one of the largest combined efforts in the history of the Syrian war.
Ansar al Din, an al Qaeda-linked group that is part of the Ansar al Sharia coalition, has posted images from the early fighting in the new offensive against Bashar al Assad’s forces in Aleppo.
Jihadist groups have announced the creation of Ansar al Sharia, a new alliance for the battle of Aleppo. Ansar al Sharia is the latest of several coalitions formed by the Al Nusrah Front and Ahrar al Sham this year.
The “Battle of Victory” coalition, which includes the Al Nusrah Front and several other jihadist groups, has declared victory in the city of Jisr Al Shughur. The battle for the city began several days ago and was the next step in the jihadists’ plans for conquering all of northwestern Syria. A highly influential al Qaeda-linked ideologue was reportedly wounded in the fighting.
The Ansar al Din Front in Syria has released a statement mourning the death of Harith al Nadhari, a sharia official in al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula who was killed in a US drone strike on Jan. 31. The statement is further evidence that Ansar al Din is, at a minimum, closely allied with al Qaeda’s international network.