Syrian Rebels Arm Palestinians to Fight Existing Palestinian Faction

FSA Throws Weapons at Refugee Camp Hoping to Claim Control

The Syrian Civil War has already brought a number of other factions into its midst: Iraqis, Kurds, Lebanese, etc. But can Palestinians become another faction at war with itself? The rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA) seems to think so.

FSA commanders say they have begun arming “sympathetic Palestinians” in the Yarmouk refugee camp, having them form a group called the Liwa al-Asifah (Storm Brigade) explicitly to pick a fight with the existing Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), which current holds the camp.

The FSA believes the PFLP is insufficiently on board with the civil war, and has accused its leader, Ahmed Jibril, of “harassing” rebel forces and supporting Assad. One FSA commander termed the PFLP “targets for all the FSA. All of them with no exceptions.”

The long-term goal is for the Storm Brigade to use those weapons to take over the refugee camp, which houses over 100,000 Palestinians, and ensure that the camp supports the rebellion.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.