On March 25, 2016 Al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate Jabhat Al-Nusra (JN) released a video titled, “The Life of Abu Baseer Al-Hindi,” a tribute to one of its British members who died in the latter part of 2015. Links to the video hosted on YouTube were circulated on various pro-JN accounts on Twitter and on Telegram.
The fighter, who was also known as Abu Baseer Al-Britani, grew up in the U.K., but appears to be of Indian descent. Abu Baseer was very vocal on social media as a media activist for JN, and routinely shared experiences from Syria as well as rigorously defended JN ideology against ISIS critics online. Thus, the video claims that at one point ISIS released a 27- page refutation of a claim that was made against the group. The video states that Abu Baseer came from central London, held a law degree, and was a teacher by profession. He came to fight in Syria and joined JN in 2014. The video explains that not only was Abu Baseer a brave soldier, but also a valuable member of Jabhat Al-Nusra’s media wing. The official Twitter account of JN’s English-language magazine Al-Risalah also claims that the fighter was its editor. The video’s narrator states that at times, being a part of the media wing can be more dangerous than fighting on the frontlines. According to the video, Abu baseer picked up a camera and went to places that no reporter or journalist would dare go. The video ends by explaining that Abu Baseer died in combat, and that he had captured his last moments on film.
Following are screenshots from the video:
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