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Is al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria’s Idlib on its way to demise?

Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, which controls Syria’s northwestern province of Idlib, is close to ending the presence of al-Qaeda affiliate Hurras al-Din, after arresting one of its top active commanders and closing its military facilities in the area.
Smoke billows following reported Russian airstrikes on the outskirts of the rebel-held northwestern city of Idlib, Syria, March 29, 2021.

ALEPPO, Syria — Al-Qaeda-affiliated Hurras al-Din (Guardians of Religion Organization) in Syria's northwestern province of Idlib has been unprecedently weakened, with its first and second jihadist leadership ranks scattered, amid the ongoing crackdown Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), which controls Idlib, is leading against jihadists close to the organization. 

The latest incidents raise questions about the continuity of Hurras al-Din and whether the organization is nearing its end, or whether it will rebuild its ranks and regain power once the security conditions are favorable.

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