By OGN Staff
In a move that has the potential to represent the biggest shift of power in the Syrian territories since the Russian military joined the war, leaders of the major north Syrian groups have hinted that an announcement concerning their merger may be imminent.
It is purported that the following groups will merge into one group:
Jabha Fath Sham (formerly Al Qaida’s affiliate Jabha Nusra)
It is rumoured that some members of Jund Al Aqsa will also join the new group. The above mentioned groups are the most powerful forces in northern Syria. While there has been much cooperation between these groups in the past they have never worked together as a single entity.
At the time of the publishing of this article we understand that the merger will be a complete one and not simply the groups working under a single umbrella organisation keeping the respective group names. A merger of this sort should, in effect, increase cooperation, intelligence, and military resources.
It appears that this merger was spurned on by the announcement by Abu Muhammad Joulani two weeks ago that his group, Jabha Nusra, no longer has ties to Al Qaida and is now known as Jabha Fath Sham. Joulani’s ties to Al Qaida has long been a sticking point for other groups who were leery of having the percieved Al Qaida stigma attached to their respective groups.
We will be following this story as it develops.