Syria Al-Qaeda Parade Shot Down Helicopter Pilot

One of four or more airmen captured by militants in al-Qaeda after their helicopter from the Syrian Air Force crash landed has appeared in a video that calls for releasing a radical cleric.

The pilot can be seen looking quite dazed and wearing bandages wrapped around his head as Abdullah al-Muhaysini a notorious jihadi rants next him while holding a large knife and assault rifle.

Al-Muhaysini has for quite some time been affiliated with groups linked to al-Qaeda in Syria, which suggest the life of that airman would be spared only if the regime in Syria releases a notorious jihadi by the name of Abu Mus’ab as-Suri.

The video also shows the airman in a room that has a banner of the Syrian affiliate of al-Qaeda Jabhat al-Nusra on the wall behind him.

Clearly suffering from injuries due to the crash of his helicopter, the pilot still had the bloody bandages around his head.

This video is rudimentary compared to the one that Islamic State has produced to showcase their prisoners. Nevertheless, just seeing Al-Muhaysini standing next to the helicopter pilot and speaking about possibly killing him while holding the large knife, has a chilling impact.

The airman is one of six on board the helicopter of the Syrian Air Force when it crashed landed in an area held by the rebels in northwest Syria, in Idlib province.

Syria’s state run news agency has confirmed that the helicopter did crash after having a mechanical problem and said authorities were searching for the crewmembers.

A human rights watchdog with people on the ground said that the Nusra Front had take four members of the helicopter crew prisoner, while another member of the air crew survived but was killed by captors. The fate of one airman is unknown.

Pictures provided by the watchdog group showed groups of different men gathering around a helicopter that is badly damaged.

The group said that Nusra Front had taken two hostages, while an unknown Islamist group had captured two others.

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