Ex-Qaeda group denies leader injured in Russia strike

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Al-Qaeda’s former Syria affiliate denied a claim from Moscow on Wednesday that its top leader had been seriously injured in a Russian air strike last month.

“Hayat Tahrir al-Sham denies what was circulated in the media about the injury of Sheikh Abu Mohamed al-Jolani and confirms that the sheikh is in good health and is carrying out fully all the duties entrusted to him,” the group said in a statement posted on Telegram.

The statement came hours after Russian defense ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said Jolani had “received multiple serious shrapnel wounds, lost an arm and is in a critical condition”.

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