Some of the pictures, however, have been seen before in previous releases or on the TIP's Twitter account. One picture (at the 2:32 mark) was first posted online by the popular Dutch jihadist Israfil Yilmaz when he had a Twitter account. I previously covered this photo at The Long War Journal. Yilmaz was previously an independent jihadi going from group to group. He fought alongside the Sayfullah Shishani Jamaat within Al Nusrah and with Jund al Aqsa; however, he has since joined the Islamic State.
Most pictures in the video appear to be new or at least haven't been seen before. Children are seen quite frequently in the video, either in the sense of appearing with their father or in the sense of being trained by the group or attending one of the group's madrasas. Around the 6:26 mark, several children can be seen with handguns or AK-47's.
A lot of the combat scenes have been seen before, either from earlier videos of the group or its most recent video from Jisr al Shughur. The photos in the slideshow show the usage of tanks, homemade mortars, suicide bombings, and small arms.
Turkistan Islamic Party in Syria
The TIP has been in Syria since at least 2012, according to one official interviewed by Turkish media.
The group has long operated alongside al Qaeda in Idlib province. In May of last year, one of its fighters, identified as Dadullah al Turkistani, detonated himself as part of a coordinated assault with Al Nusrah, al Qaeda's official branch in Syria, in the northwestern province. That same operation included a suicide attack by an American Nusrah fighter known as Abu Hurayra al Amriiki. It has also publicized other suicide bombings alongside Al Nusrah. Several other TIP fighters who have been killed in Syria have been promoted by the group’s Twitter feed.
The TIP is known to operate at least two training camps inside Syria. One training camp, which appears to be in a captured village in Idlib, is for children. The other camp is more traditional, albeit rudimentary compared to other camps seen in Syria. The Turkistan Islamic Party has a history of publicizing training camps for children. In 2013, the group released a video of a training camp for children in Afghanistan. The TIP has joined other groups, such as the Islamic State, Junud al Sham, and the Al Nusrah Front, in showcasing training camps for children.
The TIP also took part in the recent Jisr al Shughur offensive as part of the "Battle of Victory" coalition. Unlike the prior two groups, the TIP took on a large role in the fight. According to some jihadist accounts, they stormed and captured two checkpoints on their own. In one tweet by the TIP, they confirmed that they lost 20 fighters in the offensive. During the offensive, they fought alongside Junud al Sham, a Chechen group led by Muslim Shishani.
The TIP also operates alongside al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan and it also operates in China. Several TIP senior leaders have also been appointed to top positions in al Qaeda’s network in Pakistan. For example, Abdul Shakoor Turkistani, the former emir of TIP, was also appointed by al Qaeda to lead its forces in Pakistan’s tribal provinces. For more on this, see my colleague Bill Roggio's report on this here.