My money’s on the Islamists.
AMMAN (Reuters) – A Jordanian Muslim preacher who encourages a flow of militants to Syria predicts an eventual showdown between Islamists and secular rebel groups should President Bashar al-Assad fall.
Mohammed Shalabi, better known as Abu Sayyaf, said Islamist fighters with groups such as the Nusra Front, which the United States lists as a terrorist organization, had refused offers to join the rebelFree Syrian Army in return for pay and weapons.
If Assad is overthrown, he told Reuters, the Free Syrian Army, or elements within it ideologically hostile to the Nusra Front, would immediately order Islamist groups to disarm.
“Then there will be a confrontation between us and losses will rise, but I don’t want to pre-empt events,” he said.
Abu Sayyaf is a marked man, who has spent 10 years behind bars for militant activities including a plot to attack U.S. troops in Jordan, but seems unconcerned about surveillance.