Northern Division (Syrian rebel group)
الفرقة الشمالية |
Participant in the Syrian Civil War
Logo of the Northern Division
Flag of the Knights of Justice Brigade
|Leaders||Lt. Col. Fares al-Bayoush|
|Area of operations|
|Battles and wars|
The Northern Division (Arabic: الفرقة الشمالية), formerly the Knights of Justice Brigade (Arabic: لواء فرسان الحق, Liwa Fursan al-Haqq), is a Free Syrian Army group sanctioned by the Syrian National Council and formerly part of the Syrian Revolutionary Command Council. The group received BGM-71 TOW missiles from the United States and Saudi Arabia, and is also armed, trained, and funded by Qatar.
The Knights of Justice Battalion was formed in early 2012 by a defected Syrian Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Fares al-Bayoush in the town of Kafr Nabl in the Idlib Governorate. In September 2012 the group changed its name to the Knights of Justice Brigade after absorbing several smaller rebel groups.
In June 2013, the group was one of the founding members of the 13th Division, but later left the group.
The brigade joined a "quick response unit" of 600 fighters alongside other moderate and jihadist groups on 8 July 2014 to fight the Syrian Army and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in Aleppo. It suspended its cooperation with al-Nusra Front on 21 July 2014. On 7 September 2014, the Knights of Justice Brigade announced that they were allying their forces with four other rebel groups, including the 101st Division and the 13th Division, into the 5th Corps.
In December 2015 the Knights of Justice Brigade and the 101st Infantry Division formed the Northern Division. However, the 101st Division later left the group in June 2016, making the Knights of Justice Brigade the only component of the group.
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“In November we received all kinds of support including salaries. This month support stopped completely,” said Col. Fares Bayyoush, leader of the Fursan al Haqq Brigade in Kafr Nabel, a town about 20 miles south of the city of Idlib.
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