NGO: 34 ISIL militants dead after rebel clashes in Syria's Idlib
Published Tuesday 07/01/2014 (updated) 08/01/2014 14:10
Rebel fighters man a checkpoint close Jabal al-Zawiya in Idlib province,
northwest Syria on Jan. 6, 2014 (AFP/Mohamad Jadaan)
BEIRUT (AFP) -- At least 34 Wahhabi militants from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant and another group were killed after clashes with other rebel movements in Syria's Idlib province, an NGO said Tuesday.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the bodies of the 34 were discovered "executed" after the clashes in Jabal Zawiya, adding that all the dead were non-Syrian fighters.
The group said the 34, from ISIL and a group called Jund al-Aqsa, were killed by members of an Islamist-secular rebel alliance over the past few days in the northwestern province.
The deaths came amid fighting on several fronts pitting several coalitions of rebel fighters against Wahhabi militants from ISIL.
Both Islamists and secular rebels have joined the fight against ISIL, which has been accused of kidnapping, torturing and killing rival rebels and civilians.
Syria's rebels, many of them civilians who took up arms against the regime, initially welcomed the arrival of battle-hardened Wahhabi militants to the fight.
But tensions have mounted, with activists accusing ISIL of imposing a reign of terror, and rebels saying the group has focused on accumulating territory and fighting other rebels rather than targeting the regime.