On April 7, the Russian Center for Reconciliation of the Warring Parties in Syria revealed that Jaysh al-Islam leadership had eliminated three of its main commanders who had participated in the negotiations with Russia.
“As a result of sharp contradictions among odious militants and those who were ready for negotiations, the former leaders of the group were physically eliminated,” said Major-General Yuri Yevtushenko, head of the reconciliation center, according to the Russian news agency TASS.
The commanders were identified as “Abu Hamam” – the head of Jaysh al-Islam political office in Duma district, “Abu Ali” – the secretary of Jaysh al-Islam leader Essam al-Buwaydhani and “Abu Omar” – the financial administrative of the armed group.
Jaysh al-Islam claimed on April 5 that Abu Omar and Abu Ali had been killed during previous clashes with the Syrian Arab Army (SAA). However, several Syrian opposition activists reported that they were assassinated.
The reconciliation center said that “Abu Qusai”, a militant commander of Jaysh al-Islam, replaced Abu Hamam and immediately rejected all the previous agreements with Russia. Abu Qusai even stopped the evacuation of sick and injured civilians from the Duma district, according to the center.
Syrian opposition sources confirmed that Abu Hamam was replaced by Abu Qusai on April 7. However, the sources didn’t clarify the fate of Abu Hamam. This may mean that he was indeed killed.
Local observers believe that a peaceful agreement with Jaysh al-Islam leadership is impossible now as they have proven to be aggressive and untrustworthy.