“Forms of compensation for their delayed salaries” | “National Army” militiamen continue looting, imposing levies and investing in civilian houses in Ras Al-Ain
Reliable SOHR sources have reported a state of discontent among militiamen of the Turkish-backed “National Army” because of the delay of the salaries of some of them for more than a month, while others have not received their salaries for nearly 20 days. This coincides with the dreadful living conditions in Ras Al-Ain area which is controlled by “Peace Spring” operations room in north-western Al-Hasakah.
According to SOHR sources, some of the Turkish-backed militias pay the monthly salaries of their members in batches deliver every two months or two months and a half. Only a few militiamen take their salaries every month. The salaries vary from 500 TL to 700 TL, according to the taks assigned by Turkish forces, where every group leader take the salaries of their subordinated militiamen from Turkish forces and distributes the salaries to the militiamen, after deducting a part of these salaries for his favour.
Some Turkish-backed militiamen always complain of the low salaries which are enough for only ten days, as they describe, in light of the skyrocketing prices.
Speaking to SOHR, a militiaman says “the salary is too small and it is enough for only ten days. I get 900 TL every two months from the leader of the faction which I work for, after deducting 100 TL for many reasons that the leader claim. There is no authority to complain to and if we refuse to take the deducted salary, then we will be discharged or a larger sum of money will be deducted. We depend on investing in houses and shops that the faction had taken over as an additional source of income, through renting these units or imposing levies on their owners. Militiamen of some other factions depend on smuggling operations and imposing levies on checkpoints. Accordingly, we do not depend only on our salaries. Commanders and individuals close to them have seized farmlands belonging to residents from Ras Al-Ain, who have been forced to displace since 2019. These farms are cultivated and the harvest is distributed to those commanders and their affiliates. There are many other sources for collecting money to compensate the delayed salaries.”