Dozens killed as internal clashes escalate between Syrian Islamist groups near Damascus

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Syria rebel fighters preparing a rocket attack against regime positions in Damascus. File photo

ARA News

DAMASCUS – Dozens were killed on Tuesday, mostly rebel fighters, during clashes between Islamist factions near the Syrian capital Damascus, activists and military sources reported.

Violence raged in the rebel stronghold of Eastern Ghouta in Damascus suburbs. Fierce clashes took place in the area on Tuesday between Islamist rebels of the Jaish al-Islam [Army of Islam] and rival factions led by al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate Nusra Front.

“At least 42 fighters were killed from both sides in the clashes, beside the death of four civilians and the injury of a dozen more due to the ongoing conflict in Eastern Ghouta,” local media activist Hasan al-Shami told ARA News.

Eastern Ghouta, which has been for long under the control of the Jaish al-Islam, is deemed the main stronghold for the anti-Assad rebels in Damascus province southern Syria. 

The current clashes in Ghouta, described by activists as a struggle for power, has helped pro-Assad forces to advance in Damascus. Taking advantage of the ongoing internal rifts among rebel groups, pro-regime forces were able to control several locations in the town of Zibdeen in the Eastern Ghouta near Syria’s capital Damascus, local sources reported last Monday. 

“Pro-Assad forces try to exploit the ongoing fighting between the rebel factions of the Jaish al-Islam on the one hand and the Nusra-led al-Rahman Corps and Jaish al-Fustat on the other hand,” a spokesman for the Jaish al-Islam told ARA News, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Syrian opposition activists blamed the Jaish al-Islam and al-Rahman Corps for the fall of some locations to the regime’s army, warning if the internal conflict continued among Syrian rebels, the regime’s forces will most likely seize control of the remaining areas in the Eastern Ghouta within days.

Reporting by: Laila Majdalawi

Source: ARA News 

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One thought on “Dozens killed as internal clashes escalate between Syrian Islamist groups near Damascus”

  1. Titus Corleone says:

    Ah yes, have the online news media ever heard of something called… get ready for it… MAPS..? They really help to lend relevance to issues….

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