Syrian rebel coalition blames US for killing jihadi commander

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Supporters of al-Nusra Front in Syria's Idlib. File photo

ARA News 

ALEPPO – The Syrian rebel coalition of the Army of Conquest on Saturday blamed the US coalition for killing the jihadi General Commander Abu Omar Saraqeb last Thursday. 

Abu Omar Saraqeb, the top military commander of the militant Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, a former al-Qaeda offshoot in Syria, was killed in an aerial raid that targeted a meeting of the group’s leaders. He was killed in an airstrike in the countryside of Aleppo, where the group has been playing an instrumental role in ongoing battles against the Syrian army troops and Iranian-backed Shiite militias. The nationality of the jets that hit the location was not immediately known.

The US-led coalition, Russia and Syria have been conducting air strikes against militants on the ground, but the Army of Conquest rebel coalition blamed the United States.

“This comes as part of an ongoing attempt to weaken the forces fighting the Assad regime. The stance of the United States toward the Syrian revolution has proven to the world that they are not concerned with the humanitarian situation in Syria nor for the revolution, but driven solely by self-interests,” the rebel coalition said on Saturday.

“Their most recent alliance with Russia, which aims to end all armed resistance under the guise of fighting extremism, is cogent evidence that they oppose the notion of independence for the Syrian people and will fight all efforts in that direction,” the group said.

The Pentagon on Friday said it played no role in the death of the top military commander of the former al Qaeda’s al-Nusra Front, who died while in a meeting of rebel leaders on Thursday to prepare for operations in Aleppo.

On Friday, the United States and Russia announced a plan to bring a ceasefire for upcoming Monday in Syria, but analysts say that it is unlikely that the fighting will stop in northern Syria, with regime forces attempting to retake Aleppo from Syrian militants.

Al-Qaeda’s powerful Syrian branch, the Nusra Front, announced last July it was ending its relationship with the global militant network founded by Osama bin Laden, to remove a pretext used by world powers to attack Syrian civilians.

Reporting by: Wladimir va n Wilgenburg

Source: ARA News

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