Al Qaeda in Iraq Merges With Jihadist Rebels in Syria Ahead of G8 Foreign Ministers Meeting


Credit: Jabhat al-Nusra/wikicommons

British Foreign Secretary William Hague has said that Syria will be on the top of the agenda during talks with G8 foreign ministers that begin today.

Two G8 countries, France and the U.K., have both previously called for the European Union's arms embargo on Syria to be lifted, and the French foreign minister has said that the French and British could arm Syrian rebels despite the embargo. Russia, another G8 member, has warned against arming Syrian rebels.

Unfortunately for the British and the French recent news from Syria will undoubtedly raise concerns over who will end up with the weapons supplied to the Syrian rebels.

Jabhat Al Nusra, a jihadist group that has been fighting Assad's regime and has been labeled as a terrorist organization by the American government, recently merged with Al Qaeda's wing in Iraq to form The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant.

The possible use of chemical weapons in Syria last month intensified calls for intervention in Syria. While no one doubts that the Assad regime is committing horrific crimes against innocent Syrians it is important to be wary about the possibility of weapons finding their way to a newly formed jihadist group that will only contribute to destabilizing Syria once Assad is gone.