Al-Qaeda abducts Kurdish commander near Aleppo

Kurdish fighters of the YPG in Afrin bid farewell to comrades killed during clashes against ISIS. Photo: ARA News

ARA News

Afrin, Syria – Syria’s al-Qaeda affiliate al-Nusra Front has abducted a Kurdish commander from the People’s Protection Units (YPG) in Afrin region of Aleppo province, northeast Syria, Kurdish sources reported on Sunday. 

The YPG General Command said in a statement, of which ARA News received a copy, that al-Nusra Front (Jabhat al-Nusra) has abducted the Kurdish commander Jamal Efrini.

“We’ve lost contact with the commander for days, before we discover that Nusra militants have abducted him at a checkpoint on the highway of Afrin-Aleppo,” the YPG leadership said on Sunday.

The General Command also stressed its concerns about the health conditions of Efrini, who disappeared one week ago.  

“We will respond to this extreme violation with force if al-Nusra didn’t release Jamal (Efrini),” the statement added. “This radical group (in reference to Nusra) should know that we’ve respected the truce, but we won’t remain silent amid such violations.”

Al-Nusra Front hasn’t commented on the YPG’s accusation yet. 

The Kurdish forces and Nusra militants have been in conflict for years in the northern countryside of Aleppo. They reached a truce nearly four months ago, after the YPG demarcated the borders of areas under its control in the Kurdish region of Afrin, while Nusra holds other areas in Aleppo countryside. 

Nusra militants have earlier abducted several Kurdish civilians from the western countryside of Afrin, which led to clashes with the YPG that claimed lives of dozens before the release of the abductees. 

“The constant violations by Nusra militants may lead to the renewal of military operations between them and the Kurdish forces in northern Aleppo,” Kurdish activist Abdo Omar told ARA News. “We might see more bloodshed in this part of the war-torn country. Kurds won’t remain silent on the practices of the radical groups in the area.”  

Reporting by: Jinda Ahmed

Source: ARA News 

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