ANALYST: ASSASSINATIONS OF HTS LEADERS ARE NOT LIKELY TO STOP

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Too many regional and global powers are interested in curbing the threat coming from  Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) and have the means to do so for the assassinations of HTS high profile figures to stop, ardues a Clatham House researcher Haid Haid.

According to Haid’s analysis, both Turkey and ISIS as well as the Syrian government and foreign  actors could stand behind the assassinations of HTS religious leaders and military commanders. Another option is an internal conflict within the ranks of the jihadi group, fueled by the rivalry between the pragmatists, represented by HTS’s leader Abu Mohammad al-Julani, and the hardliners, oriented towards Al-Qaeda.

The assassinations that occur every other day in Idlib and other areas under HTS control are likely carried out by proxies: local bounty hunters hired by the external powers to eliminate the HTS command structure.

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