Qatari Foreign Minister Khalid al-Attiyah said on Wednesday his nation is considering direct military intervention in Syria to help jihadi mercenaries overthrow the government of Bashar al-Assad.
“If a military intervention will protect the Syrian people from the brutality of the regime, we will do it,” Attiyah said.
“If Qatar carries out its threat to militarily intervene in Syria, then we will consider this a direct aggression … Our response will be very harsh,” Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal al-Mekdad said in response to Attiyah’s remark.
Qatar has played a major role in arming and supporting the Wahhabist mercenaries.
Gulf States, Turkey Arm and Support Jihadists
In April it was reported Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar had increased the transfer of weapons and financial aid to Jaish al-Fatah, or the Army of Conquest, a command structure for jihadist groups in Syria that includes Jabhat al-Nusra, Ahrar ash-Sham, Jund al-Aqsa and the Muslim Brotherhood of Syria linked Sham Legion.
In March Jaish al-Fatah captured the provincial capital of the Idlib province and the following month took Jisr al-Shughur. It also took al-Mastumah, a large military base in the area.
More recently al-Nusra, Ahrar al Sham, Jund al Aqsa, and the Turkistan Islamic Party targeted Shiite villages in the Idlib province.
Jaish al-Fatah launched an offensive in July to take neighboring Latakia and Hama provinces. Latakia is home to the al-Assad family. The Tartus province lies south of Latakia. The Russians have a naval facility on the Mediterranean in the province’s capital city.
Jaish al-Fatah has also fought to take the Sahl al-Ghab, a strategic area that lies between Latakia, Hama and Idlib provinces. Joureen in Sahl al-Ghab is a supply line for the Syrian Army.
Syrian Coalition Moves to Take Back Territory
The Syrian military, backed up Russian air support and the participation of Iranian and Lebanese Hezbollah troops, announced on October 1 it is prepared to launch an offensive to take back the Idlib and Hama countryside from the jihadist mercenaries.
On October 14 the Institute for Cuban and Cuban American Studies at the University of Miami claimed Cuban troops have joined Russian, Iranian, Lebanese Hezbollah and possibly Chinese soldiers assisting the al-Assad government.
The foreign troops are required because thousands of military-age men in Syria have fled the country.
“The Syrian army was about to collapse because none of the young people wanted to do their military service and went to Europe,” a Lebanese intelligence official told McClatchy.
“Putin brought weapons, planes and artillery, but this is never enough, you need men,” he added. “And the Iranians produced them by bringing in more from (Hezbollah), Iraq and even other places.”