Despite the crackdown the group has faced from Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham in the region of Idlib and its environs, the al-Qa'ida-loyalist group Hurras al-Din is still trying to show itself as a force of relevance that continues the jihad in Syria. At the beginning of this year the group claimed an operation targeting the Russian presence in Raqqa province. Now it has claimed an operation targeting a bus carrying personnel of the Republican Guard in Damascus. The group says that this operation is within the 'Ghazwat al-Usra' series and was carried out in revenge and support for 'our brothers in Deraa' (amid the ongoing tension between Syrian government forces on one side and residents and former rebels on the other side who were supposed to have been 'reconciled' through Russian mediation). The group further calls on 'all the mujahideen on the land of al-Sham' to return to the 'line of the authentic jihad'- avoiding partisan name-calling but also an implicit criticism of Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham for its de facto enforcement of the Turkish-Russian negotiated ceasefire for the region of northwest Syria, as the group calls for fighting far removed from the 'international conspiracies.'
Below is the statement translated by me in full.
In the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
Second Ghazwat al-Usra
By the grace of God and His granting of success, a squadron of your brothers in the Hurras al-Din organisation blew up a bus carrying officers of the Republican Guard in the city of Damascus, within the series of the Ghazwat al-Usra and in revenge and support for our brothers in Deraa.
And we call on all the mujahideen on the land of al-Sham to return to the line of the authentic jihad, for there is no solution with this regime except killing and fighting in the path of God, far removed from the international conspiracies.
Sham al-Ribat Foundation for Media Production
Dhu al-Hijja 1442 AH.