Terrorism Profiles

Soldiers of Al Aqsa

Alternative Names:

Jund al-Aqsa, Soldiers of Aqsa, Sarayat al-Quds (predecessor)

Location:

Syria (Idlib and Hama governorates)

Leadership:

Soldiers of al-Aqsa was founded as a foreign fighter battalion by Abu Abul Aziz al-Qatari.

Membership:

In 2015, Soldiers of al-Aqsa is most comprised of Syrian fighters. The group is part of the Muhajirin wa-Ansar Alliance.

Origins: 

Soldiers of al-Aqsa was founded as a subunit of the Al-Nusra Front, which is a Sunni Islamist militia combatting Syrian military forces in the Syrian Civil War.

Major Attacks:

February 2014: Soldiers of al-Aqsa supported Ahrar al-Sham of the Islamic Front in the offensive at the village of Ma’an (Hama), which resulted in the massacre of local Alawite Shiites.

July 2014: Soldiers of al-Aqsa supported the Islamic Front in their operation to seize Hama military airport.

 Objectives:

 Soldiers of al-Aqsa seeks to overthrow the Syrian government and establish an Islamic state in Syria under Sharia law.

Ideological Roots:

Soldiers of al-Aqsa traces its ideological roots to a radical interpretation of Sunni Islam and Salafi jihadism, which seeks to achieve political objectives through violence and terrorism.

Tactics:

Firearm attacks, improvised explosive devices, suicide bombing, kidnapping, and mortar and rocket attacks.

Updated on January 15, 2016. 

References


  1. “The Other Syrian Peace Process.” Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Last modified January, 2014. Accessed January 13, 2016. http://carnegieendowment.org/syriaincrisis/?fa=54320
Previous ArticleNext Article