Al-Qaeda-affiliated Ansar al-Din has slammed Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) for arresting Abu Salah al-Uzbeki, one of its top commanders.
In a statement released on June 18, Ansar al-Din hinted that al-Uzbeki, whose real name is Sirajuddin Mukhtarov, was arrested by HTS’ security forces in a humiliating manner. The group called to resolve the issue through a joint Shari’a [Islamic] committee.
“We call on them [HTS] … to hold a joint Shari’a committee to look into their accusations,” the statement reads.
HTS arrested al-Uzbeki and two of his guards near Idlib city on June 17. According to opposition sources, the terrorist was lured by the group’s security forces.
Al-Uzbeki was leading HTS’ Katibat al Tawhid wal Jihad. Earlier this year, he was sacked from his post by the group’s leader, Abu Mohamad al-Julani. The terrorist later joined Ansar al-Din, which formed a new operations room in Greater Idlib with other al-Qaeda factions earlier this month.
The prominent terrorist is wanted by the Interpol for his role in the 2017 Saint Petersburg Metro bombing and other attacks.
Available information suggests that al-Uzbeki was arrested because he owed money to HTS. His arrest demonstrates the terrorist group’s ever gowning influence in Greater Idlib.