Islamists seize arms depot of Free Syrian Army

Bab el-Hawa border crossingThe largest Islamist rebel force in Syria seized arms depots belonging to the mainstream Western-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) on Saturday, activists said, highlighting tensions among rebel groups.

“After combat that lasted all night, fighters from the Islamic Front captured (FSA) general staff positions near the Bab el-Hawa border crossing (with Turkey) and seized their arms depots,” the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

The Observatory said the arms had been brought across the border from Turkey and that five fighters were killed, but it did not say from what side.

The seizure comes four days after the Islamic Front announced that it rejected the authority of the FSA command.

The FSA was the first organized rebel military entity to emerge after peaceful demonstrations against President Bashar al-Assad in 2011 degenerated into an armed uprising.

It was made up of army deserters and civilians.

Since then, numerous other groups have emerged, many of them Islamist, which are operating with a high degree of autonomy from the FSA if not totally independently.

The Islamic Front was formed last month when six groups merged and pledged to work towards forming an Islamic state.

Syria’s civil war, which has killed more than 126,000 people and displaced millions, has become more complicated as jihadist and other rebel groups battle not only Assad but, increasingly, each other.

In violence elsewhere on Saturday, at least 12 civilians — among them women and children — were killed in air raids on the jihadist-held northern town of Raqa, the Observatory said.

It also said the civilian toll from Friday air raids on another northern town, Bezaa, had risen to 20, among them eight children and nine women, one of them pregnant.

A member of Lebanon’s Shiite Hezbollah, which is fighting alongside Assad’s forces, was killed on Saturday in Nabuk, one of the last rebel-held areas of the strategic Qalamoun area bordering Lebanon.

The Observatory said that at least 18 people, including children, have been killed by regime forces in a shelter in Nabuk at an unspecified time, in a new toll a day after reporting 17 deaths.

The opposition National Coalition called the killings “a massacre” and said they were carried out on Friday in the government-controlled Al-Fattah district.

“Assad forces, their mercenaries and sectarian militias carried out a horrible massacre Friday morning… killing dozens of civilians, including women and children who had sought safety in an underground shelter,” an opposition statement said.

“After the massacre, regime forces torched the bodies in a bid to conceal their crime.”

Taking the Nabuk area would cement regime control of territory linking Damascus province with Homs province to the north.

SBS/AFP

  • Guest

    It’s all Israel’s fault. The rebels were mostly winning until May 2013 when Israel bombed Damascus destroying important military targets and equipment for Hezbollah. This incident made Hezbollah fully come to help Assad from Lebanon. Ever since this, Assad has been winning against the rebels. Hezbollah scouts spy on rebel positions. Then they tell the Syrian air force where to hit. Then they get artillery to hit these positions too. Then, they move in with their surrounding troops. That’s how they do it. Also, Al-Akhbar, a pro-Hezbollah Lebanese news site sent a reporter (scout/spy?) into the rebel areas in Qalamoun Syria ahead of time to write about them. Of course, information was gathered on their positions that was very helpful to Assad and Hezbollah resulting in this very fortified rebel area not doing so well because of this happening.

    • Em Ali

      Do you post the same thing everywhere you go? I have seen you on like 10 different articles/websites posting this you stupid parrot.

  • Guest

    It’s all Israel’s fault. The rebels were mostly winning until May 2013 when Israel bombed Damascus destroying important military targets and equipment for Hezbollah. This incident made Hezbollah fully come to help Assad from Lebanon. Ever since this, Assad has been winning against the rebels. Hezbollah scouts spy on rebel positions. Then they tell the Syrian air force where to hit. Then they get artillery to hit these positions too. Then, they move in with their surrounding troops. That’s how they do it. Also, Al-Akhbar, a pro-Hezbollah Lebanese news site sent a reporter (scout/spy?) into the rebel areas in Qalamoun Syria ahead of time to write about them. Of course, information was gathered on their positions that was very helpful to Assad and Hezbollah resulting in this very fortified rebel area not doing so well because of this happening.

    • Em Ali

      Do you post the same thing everywhere you go? I have seen you on like 10 different articles/websites posting this you stupid parrot.

  • 5thDrawer

    Well there you go. The greatest fears come to fruition.
    Which will justify a couple of theoretical scenarios now too … neither of which can be good for humans in general. Either there will be a complete ignoring of the place – only care for those who escape beyond the borders ….OR it will be justification for finally levelling all the concrete.

  • 5thDrawer

    Well there you go. The greatest fears come to fruition.
    Which will justify a couple of theoretical scenarios now too … neither of which can be good for humans in general. Either there will be a complete ignoring of the place – only care for those who escape beyond the borders ….OR it will be justification for finally levelling all the concrete.

  • Guest

    They shouldn’t be stealing from their Muslim brothers since this is forbidden for them to do.

  • Guest

    They shouldn’t be stealing from their Muslim brothers since this is forbidden for them to do.

  • Maborlz Ez-Hari

    Time for the FSA to put the tail where it belongs and head back to mr assads place and beg for a pardon. At least bashar looks human even though he isn’t. How bout that, they start a revolution with good intentions and they get jacked by the ones they were feeding. The longer the beard the less you can trust them.

  • Maborlz Ez-Hari

    Time for the FSA to put the tail where it belongs and head back to mr assads place and beg for a pardon. At least bashar looks human even though he isn’t. How bout that, they start a revolution with good intentions and they get jacked by the ones they were feeding. The longer the beard the less you can trust them.

  • Em Ali

    That is what they get for inviting salafists in to help them. Now the takfiri scum are walking around the homes of their host fake syrian army in the nude, taking their wives and daughters for jihad al nikah, going on mass murder sprees in the name of religion, and the stealing and looting is the icing on the cake.

  • Em Ali

    That is what they get for inviting salafists in to help them. Now the takfiri scum are walking around the homes of their host fake syrian army in the nude, taking their wives and daughters for jihad al nikah, going on mass murder sprees in the name of religion, and the stealing and looting is the icing on the cake.