Non-jihadist rebels have begun openly fighting the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, an affiliate of Al Qaeda, across northern Syria. Video posted online Monday was said to show prisoners held by Al Qaeda that rebels released in the town of Raqqa. The prisoners praised God for their freedom and shouted their stories at the cameraman. One man said he was a fighter with the Tawhid Brigade, a non-Qaeda Islamist rebel group. A second man described his time in captivity by simply saying, "Guantánamo."
On Sunday the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, based in Britain, reportedfighting between rebels and Al Qaeda in Raqqa as well as fighting between Kurdish militias and Al Qaeda in northeast Syria. It said the government continued to bombard rebel-held areas while rebels fought each other.
We do not know the identities of the men showed in this video or the circumstances under which they may have been captured by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. We do not know how many prisoners the group holds in Raqqa. We do not know what rebel group freed the men shown in this video.
A number of videos said to show the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria fighting with other rebels have been posted online in recent days. One video posted online Saturday shows rebels holding a non-jihadist flag over a local headquarters of Al Qaeda in Menbej after they seized the building.