The Guardian claims that there are no terrorist groups in Aleppo, citing a terrorist leader.
There are no terrorist groups in Aleppo, but only ‘moderate’ opposition fighters, and Russian military are just an aggressor in Syria, the Guardian weekly newspaper reported on Sunday, citing a leader of a terrorist group.
“When we took up arms at the start of the revolution to defend our abandoned people we promised God that we would not lay them down until the downfall of this criminal regime,” the newspaper quoted the words of a commander of the Ahrar al-Sham Islamist group, Al-Farouk Abu Bakr, who was “referring to President Bashar al-Assad’s government.”
“There are no terrorists in Aleppo,” he added.
So, the Guardian believes that the Ahrar al-Sham is not a terrorist group. Meanwhile, the group is heavily affiliated with the Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (previously known as the Al-Nusra Front, official Syrian branch of the al-Qaeda) and has repeatedly conducted joint operations with the al-Qaeda affiliate. The Ahrar al-Sham also jointly worked with the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group until January 2014, the group severed its ties with the IS only for the one reason: the IS killed one of the Ahrar al-Sham members, but not because the groups had different ideological views.
The Ahrar al-Sham is composed of at least 20,000 members. Its official goal is establishment of a Sunni Islamic state within Syria. According to Human Rights Watch (HRW), an international non-governmental organization that conducts research and advocacy on human rights, in 2013 190 civilians were massacred and over 200 civilians were seized just because they were from an Alawite-dominated part of Latakia province.
However, apparently, the Guardian does not think that this is enough to call the Ahrar al-Sham a terrorist group.
At the same time, the next part of the article crosses out all that was said before that seems a very strange aspect of this report:
“The Russians appear to be trying to work round both Britain and France by attempting to win the support of Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar for a ceasefire that will put pressure on al-Nusra front fighters to leave Aleppo. Estimates of the number of al-Nusra fighters in the city vary between 400 and 900. In Moscow, Shoigu explained Russia is ‘asking the countries wielding influence with the [Syrian] rebels … to persuade their leaders to end fighting and leave the city.”
“Russia has improved its relations with Turkey, and neither Turkey nor Saudi Arabia say they want al-Nusra to remain in Aleppo. America has also condemned the al-Nusra presence, saying despite a name change the group remains ideologically affiliated to al-Qaida.”
So, if there are no terrorists in Aleppo, then why do several states condemn their ‘non-existence?’