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Albin Szakola

Pro-regime Palestinian
leader killed in Aleppo

Liwa al-Quds military commander Mohammad Mahmoud Rafeh was presented a medal by Russian military officers.

Mohammad Mahmoud Rafeh, known as the "Godfather." (image via Enab Baladi)

BEIRUT - A top leader in the pro-regime Liwa al-Quds (Jerusalem Brigade) has been killed in fighting in east Aleppo, months after receiving a military medal from Russia.

 

The Palestinian fighting force announced that its military commander Mohammad Mahmoud Rafeh died on November 27 while leading troops in the Baydin Roundabout, one of the areas in the divided city seized by pro-regime forces in the past 48 hours amid a collapse of rebel lines.

 

Martyrdom

Martyrdom poster for Mohammad Rafeh. (Facebook/alqudsbrigade.sy)


“Today, he was chosen by God to stay next to him as a martyr after achieving the mission of controlling the Baydin Roundabout,” the elegiac death notice issued by Liwa al-Quds said.

 

Rafeh, who was nicknamed the “Godfather,” was feted by Russian officers only three-months ago when they awarded him a medal.

 

Medal 1

Russian media ceremony. (Facebook/Adnan as-Sayyed/profile.php?id=100012906455964)
 
In a ceremony in early August, the casually dressed Rafeh was presented Russia’s medal for “Strengthening Military Cooperation,” an award created by the Ministry of Defense in 1995.
 
Medal 2
 
Russian certifate for Rafeh's medal.(Facebook/Adnan as-Sayyed/profile.php?id=100012906455964)

 

Rafeh’s Liwa al-Quds, one of the main auxiliary fighting forces for the regime in Aleppo, was formed in 2013.

 

The militia draws mostly on Palestinian fighters from the province, including the Handarat refugee camp located north of Aleppo, which became one of the fiercest battlegrounds around the divided city.

 

NOW's English news desk editor Albin Szakola (@AlbinSzakola) wrote this report. Amin Nasr translated Arabic-language source material.

Mohammad Mahmoud Rafeh, known as the "Godfather." (image via Enab Baladi)

In a ceremony in early August, the casually dressed Rafeh was presented Russia’s medal for “Strengthening Military Cooperation."