A turning point | Pro-regime media activists criticize corruption of Syrian regime
The Syrian regime continues to clamp down on civilians and activists in areas under its control, prosecuting them over various accusations, including “offense to public and official figures”. Regime forces released a media activist in Tartus, after he was arrested on December 20 for “offending Tartus governor”.
It is worth noting that the pro-regime activist is the admin of a local political webpage critical of the regime, and he has published photos on this page revealing regime security services’ investigation report saying “the governor of Tartus will try everyone criticizing him”. However, the activist is still managing the page and publishing several cases relating to corruption and corrupt officials in regime institutions and departments.
Its also worth noting that some media activists have crossed the Syrian regime’s “redlines” and touched upon the residents’ disastrous situation in the wake of the recent economic hardship, as a local webpage once published a post which read “before you raise cries of victory, you have to appease the bereaved, deprived and hungry people first. If victory cries come with poverty, then this is a certain defeat”
In mid-January, SOHR sources said that regime security services arrested a pro-regime media activist, the director of “Boq’at Do’a” local magazine, since he received threats after publishing reports of the customhouse’s practices and dominance on the markets of Aleppo city. These reports highlighted the seizure of properties worth millions of Syrian liras by the customs authorities.
It is worth noting that this was not the first time for the media activist to be arrested by regime forces, as he had been arrested earlier on three other occasions after disclosing corruption cases in Aleppo.
In 2020, SOHR documented 98 violations against journalists, media practitioners and activists throughout Syria, including prosecutions, kidnappings, arrests and threats. With 69 violations, areas under the control of Hayyaat Tahrir Al-Sham and Turkish-backed factions in Idlib and “Peace Spring”, “Euphrates Shield” and “Olive Branch” areas topped the list of violations against journalists, followed by regime-controlled areas with 25 violations, then SDF-held areas with four violations.