The largest Islamist rebel faction operating in Syria – Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham – has issued a statement following their participation in the Riyadh peace conference.

This statement expressed Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham’s satisfaction with the meeting and its participants; it also thanked the Saudi’s for hosting the conference.

Perhaps the most important part of the statement delivered by the Islamist group was the list of demands that expressed their overall objective in Syria.

According to their statement, Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham has issued a list of demands:

  1. All Iranian and Russian military personnel must leave Syria.
  2. The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) should be disbanded, along with their paramilitary units – they reference the Shabiha.
  3. All of Syria shall be united – no partition.
  4. Syria will become an Islamic state.
  5. No negotiations with the Syrian Government.
  6. Fighting ISIS is secondary because rebels have lost family members because of the war with the Syrian Army.
  7. Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham asserts – once again – that Syria will be an Islamic state.
  8. A secular Syria will only empower ISIS.
  9. Any agreement without Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham will be considered “unsuccessful” and “unofficial”.

Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham has attempted to garner support as a “moderate” rebel group; however, their statement from Riyadh begs to differ.

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Editor-in-Chief Specializing in Near Eastern Affairs and Economics.

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