Iraq News

Syria opposition groups merge with al-Nusra Front

Several Syrian opposition factions on Saturday (January 28th) announced they have merged with al-Nusra Front (ANF), now known as Fatah al-Sham Front, after days of clashes between armed opposition groups and ANF , AFP reported.

ANF and four opposition factions – Nureddin al-Zinki, Liwa al-Haq, Ansar al-Din Front and Jaish al-Sunna – signed a declaration announcing they have formed a new alliance called Tahrir al-Sham (Liberation of Syria).

"In view of the plots shaking the Syrian revolution... we announce the dissolution of all groups mentioned below and their total merger into a new entity named 'Tahrir al-Sham'," the groups said in a statement.

The new alliance emerged days after other opposition factions joined the Ahrar al-Sham group.

ANF and Ahrar al-Sham have for years battled side by side against regime forces in Idlib, but ANF has recently clashed with its former allies in Idlib and Aleppo.

The fighting continued on Saturday with ANF seizing the area of Ihsem and the village of Dana in Idlib from opposition factions, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

ANF has been excluded from both a fragile nationwide ceasefire in force since December 30th and the recent peace talks in Astana.

The group has accused the opposition of seeking to isolate it as it is targeted by deadly airstrikes, most carried out by the international coalition.

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