Jaysh al-Izza

The Army of Glory (Arabic: جيش العزة, romanized: Jaysh al-Izza), formerly the Union of Glory (Arabic: تجمع العزة, romanized: Tajamu‘ al-‘Izza), is a Syrian rebel group affiliated with the Free Syrian Army active in northwestern Syria, mainly in the al-Ghab Plain in northern Hama and its surroundings. Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United States have supplied the group with anti-tank missiles[1] including 9K111 Fagots and BGM-71 TOWs.[6]

Army of Glory
جيش العزة
Jaysh al-Izza
Participant in the Syrian Civil War

Logo of the Army of Glory

Flag of the Syrian opposition, frequently used by the group
Group(s)Homs al-Adiya Brigades
LeadersMaj. Jamil al-Saleh (general commander)[1]

Capt. Manaf Maarati (deputy commander, until October 2019)[2]

Capt. Mustafa Maarati (spokesman, until October 2019)[2]
HeadquartersJisr al-Shughur (per pro-government reports),[3] formerly al-Lataminah[1]
Area of operations
  • 1,500 (late 2015)[1]
  • September 2019:
    • 1,133 (HTS defector claim)[4]
    • Over 2,000 (pro-government media claim)[3]
Part of Free Syrian Army
Army of Victory (2015)
Allies Tahrir al-Sham
Guardians of Religion Organization[5]
Turkistan Islamic Party in Syria
Ajnad al-Sham
Malhama Tactical
National Front for Liberation
Syrian National Army
Opponent(s) Syria
Arab Nationalist Guard
Ba'ath Brigades
Syrian Resistance
Battles and war(s)Syrian Civil War


On 30 September 2015, the first day of the Russian military intervention in the Syrian Civil War, 2 Russian bombs with 8-10 submunitions struck the group's headquarters and arm depots in a cave in the village of Al-Lataminah in northern Hama.[1][7]

During the 2016 Hama offensive in September 2016, Jaysh al-Izza used a BGM-71 TOW missile to blow up a low-flying Aérospatiale Gazelle helicopter, which they alleged to be Russian.[8]

In September 2018, though originally accepting the 2018 Idlib demilitarization brokered by Russia and Turkey, with the group's leadership even thanking Turkish President Erdoğan for the agreement, the group later shifted its position to opposing the agreement after it was revealed that Syrian Government and other pro-Assad forces would not be required to withdraw from the DMZ and that they would instead govern the opposition-held areas.[9]

On June 8th 2019 Abdel Baset al-Sarout, a senior Jaysh al-Izza commander and key member of the Syrian opposition, died from wounds sustained during combat with the Syrian Army two days prior.[10]

Following the 2017 Hama offensive, 2017-2018 Northwestern Syria campaign and the subsequent 2019 National Front for Liberation–Tahrir al-Sham conflict, the group's territorial control was confined to the areas around Kafr Zita and Al-Lataminah.[11] Those areas were subsequently captured by the Syrian Army in the 2019 Northwestern Syria offensive,[12] after Jaysh al-Izza, among other rebel groups, withdrew from the region to avoid being encircled by government forces.[13]

Pro-government media outlets reported that over 2,000 Jaysh al-Izza members relocated to rebel-held areas around Jisr al-Shughur, after retreating from Northern Hama during the course of the offensive. They further reported that the group had started fighting alongside the Turkistan Islamic Party in Syria. Jaysh al-Izza itself did not comment on the reports.[3]

On 9 October 2019, 500 fighters from Jaysh al-Izza, including its deputy commander-in-chief Capt. Manaf Maarati and spokesman Capt. Mustafa Maarati, reportedly defected to the National Front for Liberation.[2]

In early November 2019, the The Homs al-Adiyyeh Brigade of the Sultan Murad Division of the Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army defected to Jaysh al-Izza after the unilateral release of several Syrian Army prisoners of war by the Turkish government in the context of the Second Northern Syria Buffer Zone.[14]


  1. "Western-backed Syrian rebel group says hit by Russian air strikes". Reuters. 30 September 2015.
  2. "Including leaders in the first row .. Defected elements of the "Army of Glory"". Zaman al-Wasl. 10 October 2019.
  3. Desk, News (2019-09-08). "Over 2,000 militants redeploy to western Idlib after defeat in northern Hama". AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز. Retrieved 2019-09-08.
  4. "Series of detailed tweets from HTS defector Abu Salih al-Hamawi exposing HTS". Trunk News Translations. 2019-09-03. Retrieved 2019-09-04. Jaysh al-Izza has 1300 members, 167 (note: 13%) were martyred while you claim to have 10.000, and only 400 (note: 4%) were martyred.
  5. "After military operation for it, violent attack by Horas Al-Din and Ansar Al-Tawheed and Jaysh Al-Izza in northern Hama and heavy aerial and ground shelling target the area". Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. 26 April 2018.
  6. "US arms shipment to Syrian rebels detailed". IHS Jane's 360. 8 April 2016. Archived from the original on 5 December 2016. Retrieved 9 July 2016.
  7. "Russia says IS not the only target in Syria". The New Arab. 2015-10-01.
  8. "Syrian rebels destroy helicopter in Hama offensive-monitor, rebels". Reuters. 2 September 2016.
  9. "Syria rebel faction rejects Idlib deal". France24. 2019-08-29.
  10. Schmidmeier, Fabian. "Die syrische Revolution - Teil 1: Der Aktivist Abdel Basit as-Sarout". Der Orient. Retrieved 8 June 2019.
  11. "New video shows the entire Syrian Army operation to capture strategic town in Hama". AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز. 2019-08-08. Retrieved 2019-08-23.
  12. "Syrian army captures Hama rebel pocket in northwest: state media". Reuters. 2019-08-23. Retrieved 2019-08-23.
  13. "Syrian Observatory: Armed factions withdraw from Khan Sheikhoun and Hama northern countryside". Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. 20 August 2019.
  14. "The "free" handover of regime's prisoners and violations of the Turkey-loyal factions open doors of anger and resentment in the ranks of the "National Army," leaked recordings of members of "Ahrar al-Sharqiyyah": the blame is on the minister of defense and faction leaders, not Turkey, and mercenaries now steal their parents and consider it as spoils of war • The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights". The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights. 2019-11-02. Retrieved 2019-11-03.
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