9 days of bloody fighting in which Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham prevailed, while the National Liberation Front was unable to withstand the successive strikes and subsequent advancements, which expanded the size of areas controlled by Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham within what is left for the rebel and Islamic factions and the “jihadi” factions in Idlib Province and the countryside connected to it of the neighboring provinces, where the percentage of control of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham and the “jihadi” factions reached about 80%, which is an areas about 7200 km² out of about 8937 km², which is about 4.8% of the Syrian territory that used to be controlled by the rebel, Islamic, and “jihadi” factions in Idlib, Hama, Aleppo, and Latakia , and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights learned a little time ago today, Wednesday, the 9th of January 2019, that a meeting of the movement of Ahrar al-Sham of the National Liberation Front took place in the silos area in Qal’aat al-Madiq town at Sahl al-Ghab at the northwestern countryside of Hama, where they are discussing the deal that took place today about their withdrawal from the remaining areas in Sahl al-Ghab and Jabal Shashabo; in favor of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham, reliable sources informed to the Syrian Observatory that the meeting is divided between those in favor of the withdrawal and other rejecting it and want to fight to the end, and in the same context, the Syrian Observatory was informed that the agreement which took place today had enabled Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham to impose its control over about 35 new area in Jabal Shashabo and Sahl al-Ghab, and now only Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham controls both areas, and in the details monitored by the Syrian Observatory: Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham has added 10 new areas in Sahl al-Ghab to its control, they are: (Jeser Beit al-Ras, al-Hawash, al-Hawijah, al-Hwaiz, al-Horriyyeh, Bab al-Taqa, al-Hamra, al-Sharia, al-Twyna, and Qal’aat al-Madiq), and by that it completed the control of the entire Sahl al-Ghab; after it took control yesterday during withdrawals and clashes on al-Deqmaq, al-Zaqqum, Qlidin, al-Qahira, al-Ankawi, al-Emqiya and al-Hamidiyah, in addition to breaking up the control partnership with the National Liberation Front earlier in the last days of the fighting in al-Qarqour, al-Ziyara, Tal Wasit, al-Mashik, Khirbet al-Naqous, al-Mansoura, Zayzoun, and Qastun.
And in Jabal Shashabo, Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham has added 23 new areas, they are (Jubb Sulaiman, Shahranaz, al-Bwayb, Shulin, al-Mestriha, Horta, al-Dahrujiyyeh, Sher Mghar, al-Sherkeh, al-Arima, Qarrat Jern, Deir Sunbul, al-Sahriyya, Kura, al-Badriyah, Mazra’aat al-Jasim, al-Tawba, al-Karkat, Tal Hawash, Sheikh Idris, al-Jabriya, al-Hmirat, and Maidan Ghazal, and by that; Jabal Shashabo became under the control of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham completely after yesterday’s control of Rasha, Baraboo, Kokba al-Qasira, Kokba al-Tawilah, Flifel, and al-Zenkar, raising to about 90 number of areas that Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham took over during 9 days of bloody fighting, where Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham expanded its control at the expense of factions of the National Liberation Front, which were unable to repel the attacks of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham, while the bloody clashes have caused the death of 68 fighters Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham, also the Syrian Observatory documented the death of 61 fighters of the National Liberation Front, in addition to 8 civilians including 3 children and a nurse, and in the clashes between the National Liberation Front and between Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham; tens of fighters of both parties were wounded and captured, and the death toll is expected to rise because there are some people in critical situation.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights published on Friday that as the bloody clashes continue between the factions in the Syrian north, Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham and the National Liberation Front, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights received a copy of a statement issued by the “Shura Council of Scholars in al-Sham”, which declared 3 years ago in a statement that the “Syria Democratic Forces who declared war against the jihadi revolutionary factions in Syria” is a traitorous faction of Allah, his messenger, and the believers, and the they are an agent for the enemy of the religion and the nation, must be fought and warn the nation of their project,” and the statement that the Syrian Observatory received says:
“Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham exceeded all Sharia, legal, and moral limits and spread corruption in the land, gone so far with its aggression and oppression against the people and the country, and disturbed the displaced people and the residents, where the far and near, and scholar and the ignorant have hated it, and the Allah has taken its love from the hearts of the Syrian people, and it became an unbearable burden on the revolution and the rebels, knowing that it did not respond and accept the rule of Sharia in what happened, and that the opposite faction has responded to the rule, accepted it, and handed over all what was required by the court and has been agreed upon, so, the Shura Council of Scholars in al-Sham confirms and supports the statement of the Syrian Islamic Council last issued against it on the 27th of Rabea al-Akhr 1440, corresponding to the 3rd of January 2019, in which the Council confirmed 3 things, and the Shura Council of Scholars confirms them again, as follows:
It stresses the Sharia necessity that all factions -without exception, and the first of which factions of the National Front and the National Army- must stand united in the face of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham, and form one operating room to defeat its aggression and oppression, the Sharia duty requires members of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham to immediately defect of it and join the ranks of the rebels, or at least, to stay in their homes and not to kill the soul that ALLAH has forbidden to be killed, and the Shari need for all the revolutionary to stand up, of bodies, popular and civil revolutionary movement, local councils, unions, tribes, media activists, and others, to stand against the injustice and criminality of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham, by all means possible and available, and above all; to demonstrate against them in their cities and villages.”
The statement continued:
“We address in this statement members of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham, saying to them: forget what they say, drop your weapon, and keep your strength away of the displaced people who were displaced by the betrayal of your faction, and here you are killing them with the bullets of your leaders’ recklessness, drop your weapon, for you are not fighting to remove injustice or to raise the religion, you are fighting for their own crossings, their cars, their provinces, drop your weapon, go back to your home, and live as a hungry poor for that is better for you than to meet ALLAH with the blood of innocent on your hands, drop your weapon, do not believe them they lie to you when they say that you will have the reward of 2 martyrs if you were killed, put down your weapon and repent to your lord, you may not have time after this day to repent.”
The so-called “Syrian Islamic Council” yesterday a statement denouncing the “oppression and aggression” of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham in the Syrian north, and the Syrian Observatory received a copy of the statement which stated:
“Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham “al-Nusra Front” has been addicted to the oppression and aggression against the Free Army battalions, and the killing and capture of free civilians, where its leadership does not deter by religion or manners of committing atrocities and bloodshed, where Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham has fought more than 15 of military Jihadi factions, which weakened the front against the criminal Assad regime, and each time it refuses to go to an independent Islamic court in any dispute between itself and other factions, instead, it fights as if it is the legitimate ruler of the area in the way of the oppression and aggression Khawarij, who have been a plagued in this nation a long time ago, at a time where the Free Army factions are preparing for the battle of liberating Manbij form the hands of the separatist gangs; Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham launched its latest aggression in some of the liberated areas of the western countryside of Aleppo, and the Syrian Islamic Council would like to refer to the following:
- We call on all factions of the Free Army to stand united to defeat this despicable Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham, so that it cannot return to its aggression again.
2 – We call the young fighters in Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham to keep away from them, so they do not become fuel of clashes in which innocent lives and blood are shed.
- We call on all revolutionary bodies and all the free supporters of the revolution to demonstrate and protest against the sinful act and brutal aggression of Tahrir al-Sham Organization.”