|File:File:Abu Firas al-Suri.png|
|Born||1950, Madaya, Syria|
|Rank||Chief Spokesperson for the al-Nusra Front|
He then joined the Muslim Brotherhood of Syria and was reportedly a military trainer in the Muslim Brotherhood's Fighting Vanguard group between 1979 and 1980. During this time, al-Suri fought against the regime of Hafez al-Assad during the Islamist uprising in Syria.
Al Suri later traveled to Afghanistan, where he met Abdullah Azzam, a founding father of modern jihadism who was killed in the late 1980s, and Osama bin Laden. He then helped bin Laden and Pakistani jihadists establish Lashkar-e-Taiba, a terrorist organization that remains closely linked to al Qaeda to this day.
After the 9/11 attacks, al Suri helped al Qaeda families escape Afghanistan. And from 2003 to 2013 he was stationed in Yemen, where he stayed until the dispute between the al-Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant erupted.
Syrian Civil WarEdit
Due the in fighting between jihadist groups in Syria, Al Qaeda's senior leaders dispatched al-Suri to Syria, where he participated in the failed mediation efforts between the local Syrian al-Qaeda affiliate al-Nusra Front and the former al-Qaeda affiliate in Iraq, ISIL.
Role within the al-Nusra FrontEdit
Al-Suri handles al-Nusra's most delicate public affairs. He is, for instance, the al-Nusra official tasked with explaining why the group has taken more than 40 UN peacekeepers hostage.
Al-Suri's role as a senior figure in the al-Nusra Front, was not known until March 2014 when he first appeared in a video. al-Nusra introduced al-Suri as one of its witnesses against ISIL.
In the months since his first video appearance, al-Suri has taken on an increasingly prominent role within al-Nusra. In July 2014, al-Suri introduced Abu Mohammad al-Julani, al-Nusra's emir, during a major rally of fighters. His voice could be heard on a leaked audio recording of the gathering, during which Julani spoke of establishing an Islamic emirate, or state, in Syria. In a video released by al-Nusra on August 8, 2014, al-Suri said the al Qaeda branch would declare an Islamic emirate in Syria only after consulting with other leading parties. By then, al-Nusra was openly naming al-Suri as its official spokesperson.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 "Who's who in the Nusra Front?". 15 December 2014. http://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/politics/2014/12/15/whos-who-in-the-nusra-front. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 "Al Nusrah Front spokesman explains differences with Islamic State in video appearance". 13 August 2014. http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2014/08/al_nusrah_front_spok.php. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 "Al Qaeda veteran takes on a more prominent role as spokesman in Syria". 6 September 2014. http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2014/09/al_qaeda_veteran_tak.php. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
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