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View Diary: ALEPPO: Step outside the Matrix and witness the Horror (63 comments)

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  •  When Assad is gone the fight will continue (2+ / 0-)
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    chipmo, Fire bad tree pretty
    Syria’s Aleppo reported tense, awaiting battle; journalists freed from extremists

    Meanwhile, for the first time since the uprising against Assad began in March 2011, the presence of dozens of foreign Islamist fighters was confirmed Friday by two journalists who’d been held by a group of them near the border with Turkey for a week.

    Jeroen Oerlemans, a Dutch freelance photographer, told the NRC Handelsblatt newspaper that he and British photographer John Cantlie were held for a week by the group, which they accidentally encountered after they’d crossed into Syria surreptitiously from Turkey.

    Oerlemans said the group of about 20 included a Pakistani who spoke English and “a number of Africans” and “many Central Asians.” He described them as “foreign jihadists.”
    ...

    In the days they were held, Oerlemans said, they met other foreign combatants. “We met many combatants who spoke good English, some with Birmingham accents,” he said, referring to the British city that has a large immigrant population. “They see Syria as the last battlefield. But first Assad must be toppled. So they fight against the same opponent as the Free Syrian Army, only with a different purpose. As soon as Assad has fallen, these fighters want to introduce Islamic law, Sharia, in Syria.”

    “I immediately felt sorry for the fighters of the Free Syrian Army,” Oerlemans said. “You get rid of Assad, and the first thing you have to deal with is these guys.”

    Read more here: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/...

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