Syria: popular uprising against al-Qaeda rule

Under the slogan “The People Are Stronger Than You,” thousands of local residents have repeatedly taken to the streets of Ma’arat al-Numan, a town¬†in Syria’s northwestern Idlib governorate, to oppose the rule of jihadist forces that have seized control there. The¬†protests broke out after the Qaeda-affiliated militia that controls the town, Hayat Tahrir a-Sham (HTS, an offshoot of the Nusra Front) raided the local headquarters of the Free Syrian Army’s¬†Division 13, killing and detaining several FSA fighters on June 8.¬†The biggest reported protest came on¬†June 11, when thousands of residents and civil resistance activists¬†waving Free Syrian flags¬†mobilized to demand the release of the detained fighters. ¬†“We will continue to resist [HTS] in the same way that we peacefully resisted the Syrian regime, and endured its crackdown on protests,”¬†Khaled al-Hamid, a 22-year-old protest organizer, told independent news site¬†Syria Deeply. (More at Global Voices)