Syrian opposition Jaysh al Islam appoints new commander

Jaysh al Islam powerful opposition group in Syria appoints new successor to replace top commander Zahran Alloush who was killed in Russian air strike on capital Damascus

Photo by: AFP (Archive)
Photo by: AFP (Archive)

Zahran Alloush, former head of the Jaish al Islam

A Syrian militant group whose commander Zahran Alloush was killed by an air strike near Damascus, mourned the death of the powerful opposition commander and has vowed to continue fighting both the Syrian government and the DAESH terrorist group.

The group, Jaysh al Islam says it has appointed 40 year old Essam al Buwaydhani, as the new leader of the group.

According to Syrian pro-opposition sources, Russian air strikes targeted the group's headquarter in al Marj, in the eastern Ghouta region of Damascus.

His assassination is a big blow to the group fighting to topple Syrian regime leader Bashar Assad and a boost to government forces who are being supported by the Russian military in Syria for the past few months.

"The martyrdom of Sheikh Zahran Alloush should be a turning point in the history of the revolution and rebel groups should realize they are facing a war of extermination by (Russian President Vladimir) Putin's regime," said Labib Nahhas, a senior member of the Ahrar al Sham group.

"The next stage will witness the liquidation of those leaders who began the uprising," wrote Abu Hassan al Muhajer, another senior member of the group, via Twitter.

Since September 30 Russia has been launching air strikes in support of the Syrian regime leader Bashar al Assad. The Russian air strikes have targeted assemblies of Assad opponents, including the western trained moderate opposition, killing hundreds of civilians and destroying facilities in the western rebel-held areas.

TRTWorld and agencies