BEIRUT, LEBANON (6:20 P.M.) – The Islamist rebels are once again clashing in southern Idlib after a relatively peaceful two weeks among the rival factions.
According to local reports, heavy clashes erupted between Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham and Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham inside the town of Umm Seir in southern Idlib earlier today.
The reports said both parties used light and medium weapons, but they did not go into specifics regarding the reason for the clashes.
Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham and Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham have clashed on a number of occasions in the past, with the majority of their firefights ending in one side losing territory to the other.
Since the collapse of the jihadist-led Jaysh Al-Fateh coalition, Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham has attempted to change their image from a hardline Islamist group to a similar rebel force as the Free Syrian Army (FSA).
Ahrar Al-Sham is now part of a large coalition of rebel forces fighting under the banner of the Turkish-backed National Liberation Front (NLF).
Despite the emergence of the NLF in northwestern Syria, Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham still remains a major force in the governorates of Hama, Idlib, Latakia, and Aleppo.