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BAKU: Xacmaz Worker Against Bashar Al-Asad...Interview With Former F

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  • BAKU: Xacmaz Worker Against Bashar Al-Asad...Interview With Former F


    Yeni Musavat, Azerbaijan
    Sept 8 2013

    >From time to time the national and foreign press report the killing
    of Azerbaijanis who take part in the fighting in Syria. The corpses
    of some of them have even been displayed on the YouTube channel.

    Furthermore, video statements by several Azerbaijani fighters in Syria
    have also been broadcast. It is said that they fight in various Syrian
    cities for the military units and the opposition against the Bashar
    al-Asad regime. It is also said that the number of those who go from
    Azerbaijan to Syria to fight is on the rise. The parent of one of
    them recently said in an interview with ANS TV that they sometimes
    talk on the phone.

    [Passage omitted: Previous reports about fighters in Syria]

    We are looking for a young man who left his home in this village to
    fight in Syria and returned after being wounded. The village resident
    who heard we are looking for Anar Mahmudov said: "You are looking
    for Anar who was wounded in Syria". After receiving our answer,
    he pointed us to Mahmudov's house.

    Mahmudov was born in 1988. He was not eager to talk with us. Although
    the video interview had been agreed, he tried not to reply to
    questions with concrete answers. He often asked us to switch off the
    camera and expressed his dissatisfaction with how the questions were
    constructed. In general, he talked about his involvement in the Syrian
    war very briefly, in a disjointed and irregular fashion.

    He said that he studied in the village high school in former Xacmaz.

    He began praying a year ago. He said that he saw Muslims dying in
    Syria and decided to go. His family was not aware that he will go
    to Syria. In February 2013 he went to Turkey and then crossed the
    border into Syria. According to him, he stayed in a house in the
    place called Artma outside the Syrian capital together with eight
    people of different nationalities. Mahmudov said that he had no links
    with fighters who came from Azerbaijan and that there were people of
    various ethnicities: "I worked in Xacmaz as a low-skilled worker. It
    is possible to go to Syria with 150 manat. I went on bus to Turkey
    and from there reached the border with Syria. I stayed in a place
    called Artma in a house with eight other people.

    People are not blind and they see that Muslims are killed in Syria.

    Fighting occurred outside the place where we stayed. When I was on
    the post I received a bullet above the knee. I was wounded and they
    took me to a hospital in another place. Then I returned to Azerbaijan
    because of the wound. I spent just six months in Syria. I came in
    February and returned in July".

    We say that we wish to take a photograph and video of the wound to
    his leg. Mahmudov vehemently opposes this. To justify this he said
    that religion prohibits him from showing the part above the knee.

    Mahmudov said that Muslims in Syria wish for Sharia law: "Just like
    there were Afghans in the Karabakh fight, I too went to Syria. Muslims
    want Sharia law in Syria. This is a jihad on the road to God. Religion
    tells us to fight against those who fight us. Sheikh Fovza has a
    fatwa about the jihad. This fatwa obliges us to fight infidels".

    Sheikh al Fawzan has a call to Khawarij on social networks. In the
    statement he says "it is essential that you obey your leaders who
    call on you to march and fight".

    Mahmudov said that camps have been set up in Syria: "Some fought and
    some served as sentries. I have not seen my leader. I returned from
    Syria myself. My family did not know when I left. What could they say
    when I returned? They would not evict me from the house. I returned,
    but I have no job here".

    In general, this youngster who fought in Syria left open and unanswered
    many of our questions. He did not say who he met after crossing the
    Syrian border, how he ended up in Artma, who welcomed him and how
    supplies of food and water were organized. Neither did he answer
    our question as to whether the security agencies questioned him. He
    only said that they put many photographs in front of him and asked
    whether he saw any of them in Syria. Mahmudov did not wish to talk
    about his answer.

    In former Xacmaz people say that about 10 people went to fight in
    Syria. In general, people with long bears and three quarter length
    trousers can be often seen in the districts. There are reports that
    a fellow spirit funded Mahmudov's involvement in the fight in Syria.

    This also gives grounds to say that many youths like Mahmudov will
    travel from the northern region to Syria...

    [Translated from Azeri]

    From: Baghdasarian