Al Qaida Leader Vows Revenge for Airstrikes in Syria

As U.S.-led strikes continue in Syria, the leader of the Nusra Front promises revenge.

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The leader of the Nusra Front, al-Qaida's affiliate in Syria, warned the U.S. and its coalition Sunday that it would "use all possible means" to exact revenge for the airstrikes begun this week — and that it would do so within the Western countries that make up the coalition.

In a 25-minute audio recording, Nusra Front leader Abu Mohammed al-Golani said, "We will use all that we have to defend the people of Syria...from the Crusader alliance. And we will use all possible means to achieve this end."

The target of the recording appears to not only be aimed at Western leaders, but also citizens of those countries, saying they "will pay the biggest price."

"This is what will cause the battle to be transported to the hearts of your own homes; because Muslims will not stand idly by and watch Muslims be bombed and killed in their countries, while you are safe in your countries. The price of war will not be paid by your leaders alone. You will pay the biggest price," he said.

Although the Nusra Front was added to the State Department's list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations earlier this year, the now U.S.-backed Syrian rebels have often considered the organization as an ally against Syrian forces loyal to President Bashar Assad and ISIS. The U.S.-led strikes have now caused some Nusra Front fighters to call for an alliance with ISIS.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.