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Syria’s Ahrar Al-Sham Appointed New Leader After Internal Crisis, Pressure From Turkey

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The Turkish-backed Ahrar al-Sham Movement has appointed a new leader, ending an internal crisis that began more than a month ago.

Citing sources within the movement, the Istanbul-based Syria TV confirmed on December 2 that Abu Yahiya al-Hamui, also known as “al-Qalaa,” had been appointed as the new Commander-in-Chief.

Al-Hamui, whose real name is Muhanad al-Masri, is a native of western Hama and one of Ahrar al-Sham founders. He was the “General Commander” of the movement during 2015.

Ahrar al-Sham is one of the few large Turkish-backed factions in the northwestern Syrian region of Greater Idlib. The movement fights side by side with al-Qaeda groups.

Syria’s Ahrar Al-Sham Appointed New Leader After Internal Crisis, Pressure From Turkey

Muhanad al-Masri, aka Abu Yahiya al-Hamui

In October, a serious crisis threatened the unity of Ahrar al-Sham. The movement’s leader, back then, Jaber Ali Basha had a fall out with Inad Darwish, “Abu al-Munzier,” the commander of the military wing and Hassan Soufan, a former commander.

Backed by al-Qaeda-affiliated Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), Soufan and Darwish launched a campaign to sack Basha and his affiliates.

The “rebellion” ended last month when a group of al-Qaeda-affiliated Sheikhs intervened to find a settlement. Turkey also halted its support for Ahrar al-Sham in order to pressure both wings into finding common grounds.

The appointment of al-Hamui was a part of the final settlement, which also saw the formation of a new Shura Council with Soufan, Darwish and four other members appointed by Basha. A commander known as Abu Sohib was appointed as the new leader for the military wing.

Darwish remained the representative of the movement in the al-Fateh al-Mubeen Operations Room, which is dominated by HTS and other al-Qaeda factions.

The settlement has saved Ahrar al-Sham for the time being. The movement, which lost most of its influence and assets over the past four years, will not likely survive another internal crisis or a battle in Greater Idlib.


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Willing Conscience (The Truths

All I can see is Turkey capitulating to HTS demands. the tiny little HTS mouse is telling the enormous Turkish elephant exactly what it can and can’t do, LOL.
So who says Turkey’s practically invincible, HTS is proving they’re not, HTS is finding all of Turkey’s weak spots and then sticking their fingers in.

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