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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Syrian Rebels Won't Back US on Al-Nusra Front

I had noted a couple days ago that the al-Nusra (or Nusra) Front was an al-Qeada backed rebel group which the U.S. planned on blacklisting by including the group as a terrorist organization. The hope was that the other Syrian groups would distance themselves from the Nusra Front. However, given that the Nusra Front was not only one of the most effective rebel forces, but also had become popular, I doubted the other rebel groups would cooperate. My concerns have been born out. From Reuters:
The leader of Syria's opposition coalition urged the United States on Wednesday to review its decision to designate the militant Islamist Jabhat al-Nusra as a terrorist group, saying religion was a legitimate motive for Syrian rebels.

"The decision to consider a party that is fighting the regime as a terrorist party needs to be reviewed," Mouaz Alkhatib told a "Friends of Syria" meeting in Morocco, where Western and Arab states granted full recognition to the coalition seeking to oust President Bashar al-Assad.

"We might disagree with some parties and their ideas and their political and ideological vision. But we affirm that all the guns of the rebels are aimed at overthrowing the tyrannical criminal regime."

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