Ongoing Turkish threats of incursion into N and E Syria | Tribal elders and social figures express rejection of Turkish threats and confirm holding on their land
Since November 19, Turkey has escalated their military operations in north and east Syria, targeting infrastructure, amid ongoing threats of an imminent incursion into Syrian territory citing the terrorist explosion in Istanbul as an excuse, as Turkish authorities have claimed that Syrian Kurds have been involved in the explosion. The latest Turkish attacks, which targeted different positions in Al-Hasakah, Al-Raqqah and Aleppo, included airstrikes by drones and fighter jets and ground bombardment, while the attacks coincided with renewed threats of starting a new incursion into north-east Syria region.
On the other hand, residents in north Syria region have confirmed that they hold on their land and expressed their rejection of Turkish threats of starting an incursion into their areas and occupy them. In several public protests, the residents announced their support to military forces against any potential aggression, while tribal elders and dignitaries have played a considerable role during these protests, as they have believed that the potential incursion will not target a specific segment of the Syrian society or a specific category, and that war will be devastating at all levels.
According to SOHR sources, Arab tribes amassed their troops, in the past few days, and raised their combat readiness. Tribesmen have stressed that Turkish forces do not think of controlling security or imposing stability in the region, and that they care only about reviving ISIS and promoting extremist and exclusionary ideologies. This poses a threat to the Arab Syrian tribes and other constituents in that region.
According to some residents in Al-Hasakah city, social activists and tribal elders have played a significant role in controlling the security situation in the region and provided all elements required for keeping tenacity of the interior fronts, as well as encouraging young men to join military forces and fight alongside fighters to thwart every potential aggression. Many tribes have participated in these efforts, the most prominent of which are Shamar, Al-Ekaydat, Al-Jabbour, Tayy’ and Al-Na’im.
Specking to SOHR, the elder of Al-Sharabeen tribe, Mohamed Al-Ebeed says, “the people of Al-Sharabeen tribe denounce the Turkish attacks on north and east Syria, and they express their solidarity with the military forces in the area and their readiness to support and fight alongside them against Turkish forces. The elder has confirmed that they are a part of this region, and that they will tenaciously defend it.
On the other hand, the advisor of Al-Jabbour tribe’s council, Akram Mahshoush says, “the stance of the Arab tribes reflects the stance of every Syrian in general. The Turkish threats affect all the country, the areas in north-east Syria in particular. Everyone think that these attacks targets the Kurds only is wrong, as every village hosts people of all constituents of the Syrian society, and all these constituents are united against Turkey which attempts to occupy those areas under the pretext of ‘defending Turkey’s national security.’ Syrians are defenders, but not attackers. The region’s tribes see that the weak stance adopted by the international community, US and Russian forces is a green light for Turkey to attack the region. The latest Turkish attacks targeted the infrastructure, such as oil wells and gas stations. This affects civilians only, and we hope that all international powers will take an action which could potentially put an end to Ankara’s threats. The started nearly 12 years ago, and Syrians, especially in the Syrian Jazeera, have been still struggling with strict sieges manifested in the deteriorating services, chronic crises and growing tension.”