Al-Qaeda-styled militant faction al-Nusra has issued a statement claiming credit for a number of major terrorist attacks inside Syria over the past few weeks, including the attack on a private television station and the murder of several of its employees.
The statement focused on and defended the attack on al-Ikhbariya TV, saying that the private station was “an arm of the regime” and the deaths of its employees would make others wonder when they will be attacked. They also released photos of 11 employees kidnapped during the attack.
Al-Nusra is a relatively recent terrorist group, issuing its first statement in January and claiming credit for a number of suicide bombings that were previously blamed on al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI).
A large number of jihadists have flocked to Syria since al-Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri formally endorsed a religious war against the Assad regime last year. The existence of such groups has complicated the rhetoric of other rebel groups, which had previously tried to argue that Assad was in league with al-Qaeda.