Rania Abouzeid, ECFR Visiting Fellow and Journalist
Julien Barnes-Dacey, Senior Policy Fellow, ECFR
Extremist fighters are playing an increasingly prominent role among Syria’s armed opposition. Over the past six months the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, drawing upon a more trans-national jihadi ideology and dominated by foreign fighters, has emerged to the fore, provoking growing intra-rebel clashes and mounting Western concern.
During this discussion Rania Abouzeid, who has spent considerable time on the ground among the armed opposition, will consider the prominence, role and ideology of extremist fighters, what this means for the trajectory of the opposition movement and their struggle against Bashar al-Assad (including attempts by other groups to push back against this trend), while also reflecting on the regional ramifications given the increasing number of attacks now being seen in Lebanon and Iraq.
Rania Abouzeid is a Visiting Fellow at ECFR. Based in Beirut, Rania is an experienced journalist who has extensively covered the Syria conflict from within the county, particularly the north, since it first began in 2011. Rania currently writes for The New Yorker and Al Jazeera America. She was previously Middle East correspondent for Time Magazine.