FSA to al-Qaeda: Killing of Syria rebel official ‘declaration of war’

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The rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA) said the killing of Kamal al-Hamami, an FSA official, by members of the al-Qaeda-linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant was a “declaration of war.”

Hamami, also known as Abu Baseer al-Ladkani – was a member of the FSA’s Supreme Military Council. He was meeting with members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in the Syrian port city of Latakia on Friday when they killed him, Reuters quoted FSA spokesman Qassem Saadeddine as saying.

In an interview with Al Arabiya, FSA spokesman Louay Almokdad said the Syrian armed opposition’s demand that Hamami’s killers be handed over to the FSA was “a rightful request.”

“A criminal named Abu Ayman al-Baghdadi killed an FSA official in cold blood using his personal gun and in front of eye witnesses that include FSA leaders,” Almokdad said. “We do not threaten, we do not warn and we do not instigate battles with anyone. This murderer must be handed over to a just and fair judiciary, so justice can run its course.”

Almokdad also said that the FSA was still not informed as to why Hamami was killed.

“We are waiting to know the reason why he was killed. It’s been 48 hours now and no clarification has been issued yet,” he told Al Arabiya. “Hamami was killed whilst discovering a Syrian regime position in order to carry out a military operation,” Almokdad said.

“Hamami’s murderers [served] the interest of Bashar al-Assad’s regime. Those who murdered Hamami must explain why they did it, otherwise, let them announce that they work with Bashar al-Assad.”

Almokdad also commented on the relation between the FSA and al-Qaeda-linked groups.

“What is currently happening is not tension between the FSA and al-Qaeda groups, because there wasn’t a relation in the first place. They consider us infidels and they [instructed] Abu Baseer’s companion to tell us: “we will kill you all.’”

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