"National Army" being set up by Syrian rebels with Turkey's help could become a long-term obstacle
to President Bashar al-Assad's recovery of the northwest - if they can end factional rivalries that have long blighted the opposition.
The effort is at the heart of plans by the Turkish-backed opposition to secure and govern a strip of territory that forms part of the last big rebel
stronghold in Syria. The presence Turkish forces on the ground has helped to shield it from government attack. Assad, backed by Russia and
and Iran, has vowed to recover "every inch" of Syria, and though he has now won back most of the country, the Turkish presence will complicate any government offensive in the northwest.
Head of the National Army, says setting up the force has been no easy task over the last year. We are at the beginning. We face many difficulties but we are working to overcome them,"
The National Army compromises some 35,000 fighters from some of the biggest factions in the biggest factions in the war that has killed hundreds of hundreds of thousands of people forced some 11 million people from their homes over the last seven years .
Turkish support includes fighters' wages, logistical support and weapons if necessary". He listed three enemies: Assad,
the PKK and Islamic State.
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