Al - Qaeda - linked Takfiri groups are the centerpiece of anti - government forces in Syria as the entire spectrum of the opposition is basically “fractured, ” a political analyst said.
“What we have in Syria right now is basically al-Qaeda elements really calling the shots in many, many places,” said Nasser al-Omari in a Friday interview. The analyst noted that all the factions of the Syrian opposition, ranging from the civilian opposition to relatively moderate anti-government forces, are “fractured.” Omari argued that the ongoing efforts by the Syrian opposition to distance itself from the al-Qaeda-linked elements are unlikely to be effective as “more and more al-Qaeda elements are actually pouring into Syria.” Meanwhile, the Syrian Army said on Friday it had made more gains against foreign-backed militants during operations in the western province of Latakia, killing top militant commander Walid Oweissi of Libyan nationality and a number of other militants, including Qatari and Tunisian nationals. The Syrian Army has also managed to recapture a number of villages from the militants in Latakia, including Tallet Habs al-Dam, Tallet al-Khudur, Karm Aramo village, Obeen and Abo Mekkeh. Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since 2011. According to reports, the Western powers and their regional allies -- especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey -- are supporting the militants operating inside Syria. According to the United Nations, more than 100,000 people have been killed and a total of 7.8 million of others displaced due to the violence.