Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

#TECH 24

Anonymous Vs ISIS

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Ebola virus: US to send 3,000 troops to West Africa

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Nigeria attack: Bomb blast in college in Kano

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Ebola: Lockdown brings Sierra Leone capital to a halt

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Sarkozy's political comeback: did he ever leave?

Read more

DEBATE

The World This Week

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Travel chaos: Air France pilots take industrial action

Read more

THE BUSINESS INTERVIEW

Christian Kastrop, Director of Policy Studies, OECD

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Ebola: UN Security Council unanimously passes resolution

Read more

Middle east

Islamist militants open new front in battle for Syria

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-01-18

Members of the rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA) have fled across the border into Turkey following fighting with a new enemy: al Qaeda-linked fighters who would like to turn Syria into an Islamic state. FRANCE 24 reports from this new battlefront.

For more than two years rebel militias, including Islamists, have squared off against forces loyal to President Bashar al Assad. But in recent weeks the battlefield has shifted dramatically, with the FSA and al Qaeda-linked fighters turning their guns on each other.

Militants belonging to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) overran the north-eastern Syrian city of Tel Abyad last week, raising al Qaeda’s black flag over the conquered city.

It was one of several important victories for Islamists in the region.

As a resul, a wave of Syrian refugees, including dozens of FSA fighters, spilled across the border with Turkey to escape the advancing ISIL militia.

The FSA is now gathering its forces in Turkey and scrambling to avoid further setbacks, but it is feeling increasingly isolated.

While they face a new front in this bitter war, they complain that the Syrian National Coalition, which is supposed to represent them on the diplomatic stage, is disconnected from the reality on the ground.

To watch FRANCE 24’s full report from the Syrian-Turkish border, click on the player above.

Date created : 2014-01-18

  • SYRIA

    Syrian rebels battle al Qaeda jihadists in second 'revolution’

    Read more

  • SYRIA - UK - FRANCE

    French firm to help UK destroy Syrian chemical weapons

    Read more

  • SYRIA

    Aid pledge falls short of Syrian humanitarian needs

    Read more

COMMENT(S)