DAMASCUS, SYRIA (3:20 P.M.) – The al-Qaeda-linked Ha’aty Tahrir al-Sham jihadi group is now cracking down on Jaysh al-Islam rebels who arrived at Idlib province as per an evacuation deal with the Syrian government.
According to local sources, a number of wanted Jaysh al-Islam militants – mostly commanders – have been blacklisted by the jihadi group whose checkpoints in the southern countryside of Idlib are carefully scrutinizing the evacuees in search for the wanted.
Reports had it that some East Ghouta rebel commanders have been already arrested.
The two groups – even though share a lot of their Salafist ideology – are known to be political rivals. Once the biggest and strongest rebel group in East Ghouta, Jaysh al-Islam cracked down on Nusra, killing and arresting scores of its fighters in a bloody power struggle.
Now the Saudi-backed militia has surrendered to the Syrian Army, it seems most of its commanders would be targeted by the ultra-conservative group which control the northwestern province e of Idlib.