World Bulletin / News Desk
The head of al Qaeda's Syria wing Nusra Front said he saw no solution soon to a conflict with the rival ISIL group in Syria, according to an interview with Al Jazeera aired on Wednesday.
"There is no solution between us and them in the meantime, or in the foreseeable future. We hope they repent to God and return to their senses...if not then there is nothing but fighting between us," Abu Mohamad al-Golani told the channel. It was not clear where or when the rare interview took place.
It was the second of a two-part interview and included footage of a Nusra training camp, weaponry, a lesson inside a classroom as well as images of a prison and a food packing operation inside Nusra-held territory.
Golani said his armed group had around 30 percent foreign fighters including "a small number" of Americans. The foreign contingent also included Europeans and many Asians, Russians and Chechens, he said.
This has triggered debate among Western diplomats following Syria's conflict who still see it as a dangerous, hardline group that is not clearly distinguishable from ISIL.
In last week's instalment Golani had made clear he took orders from al Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri, who had told him to focus Nusra's fight on Syria. This week he evaded a question about whether Nusra was thinking of splitting from al Qaeda.
Nusra follows al Qaeda's hardline interpretation of Islam and sees Shi'ite Muslim power Iran as a major foe. Golani said Iran, which backs Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, was using only militias to fight jihadists in Syria.
He said Tehran had also sent military experts but not its national troops to Syria and said Nusra was determined to fight Iranian-backed groups.
"We will cut off the arms of Iran in our region, and as for Iran, it will be handled by those (inside it)," he said, alluding to possible revolt by minority Sunnis and Kurds.
Syria's United Nations envoy said last week the interview violated U.N. counterterrorism resolutions and was an attempt by Qatar to whitewash the group's image. The channel has not responded to requests for comment.Güncelleme Tarihi: 04 Haziran 2015, 09:14