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Patrick Poole

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October 5, 2012 - 9:03 am

An article Wednesday in the Beirut-based Al-Akhbar discusses internal divides and fighting between Syrian jihadist groups seeking to topple the Assad regime, including the recent assassination of a warlord by another rival group. (HT: Andrew Bostom)

Buried in the story, however, is this curious contributing factor for the split in jihadist forces:

According to reports coming from Idlib and Aleppo obtained by sources in the Syrian opposition, clashes between Islamist militant groups have become more frequent as they compete for power and influence, each one asserting that their religious interpretation is the only true path.

There also appears to be a cultural clash between non-Arab Muslims from Pakistan, Afghanistan, the Balkans and Chechnya on the one hand, and Arabs from Syria, Libya, Tunisia and Jordan on the other, over the exploitation of sex slaves.

Some Islamists consider these women to be spoils of war, especially the wives and daughters of regime supporters, but local fighters are more apprehensive about the issue. Dozens of women have reportedly been sexually assaulted.

Others within the movement have firmly stood up to these groups and rejected such practices. For one thing, they believe that this will turn sympathetic Syrians against them.

The practice of taking sex slaves is permitted in Islamic law based on Koran 4:24, 23:5-6 and 33:50.

Lest anyone think this is a practice only justified in the ancient periods of Islamic history:

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Patrick Poole is a national security and terrorism correspondent for PJMedia. Follow me on Twitter.
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