Monday, June 16, 2014

Syria's Assad accused of boosting al-Qaeda with secret oil deals - Telegraph

Western intelligence suggests Bashar al-Assad collaborating with jihadists to persuade West the uprising is terrorist-led

Fighters of al-Qaeda linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant parade at Syrian town of Tel Abyad, left, and Syria's Preisdent Bashar al-Assad Photo: REUTERS/AFP
By , in Istanbul and Richard Spencer
7:53PM GMT 20 Jan 2014

The Syrian regime of President Bashar al-Assad has funded and co-operated with al-Qaeda in a complex double game even as the terrorists fight Damascus, according to new allegations by Western intelligence agencies, rebels and al-Qaeda defectors.

Jabhat al-Nusra, and the even more extreme Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams (ISIS), the two al-Qaeda affiliates operating in Syria, have both been financed by selling oil and gas from wells under their control to and through the regime, intelligence sources have told The Daily Telegraph. 

Rebels and defectors say the regime also deliberately released militant prisoners to strengthen jihadist ranks at the expense of moderate rebel forces. The aim was to persuade the West that the uprising was sponsored by Islamist militants including al-Qaeda as a way of stopping Western support for it. (CONTINUED)

FULL ARTICLE HERE: Syria's Assad accused of boosting al-Qaeda with secret oil deals - Telegraph

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