المرصد السوري لحقوق الانسان
The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights

Rebel groups defected from the Syrian Elite Forces assert the reports of SOHR and announce accession to Deir Ezzor Military Council and joining the SDF

A group of the rebel factions, who belong to two Arab tribes, announced that they joined Deir Ezzor Military Council and work under the umbrella of the SDF, after their defection of the Syrian Elite Forces days ago, and the newely group announced that the SDF are their military leadership reference until the end of the presence of ISIS in Deir Ezzor.

In the statement received by the SOHR: “We are a group of seven battalions, who belong to the tribes of al-Bakara and al-Shuaytat, and after we suffered during our confrontation with the regime and the war in all areas of Syria, from Deir Ezzor  to Hama, Homs, Raqqa and Idlib, as well as our war against the Islamic terrorist groups, and after we saw the so-called battalions and factions of the Free Army deviated from the aims of the Syrian people and their dependence on political money and petrodollar, we thought well when the Elite forces was established and we thought that it is a serious attempt to restore things to the right path, so we had rapidly joined them and moved from Idlib o the countryside of Deir Ezzor and Hasaka to participate with the SDF to confront terrorism and liberate our cities and villages from the terrorist organization of Daesh, but unfortunately we faced many problems, and many vague questions were raised but there were no answers to assure us, these were many questions marks about the absence of a clear project or program of action of these forces and their lack of seriousness in the revolutionary work and their narrow-minded interests, therefore, we the 7 brigades from the tribes of al-Bakara and al-Shuytat decided to break away from the Syrian Elite Forces and join the Military Council of Deir Ezzor and consider the Syria Democratic Forces as our military leadership reference  and to work under the banner of the SDF in order to liberate our cities from the abomination of terrorist Daesh organization”.

The statement added: “while we confirm that we are joining the Military Council of Deir Ezzor with our arms and equipment, we also give thanks to the leadership of the Syria Democratic Forces for receiving us and giving us the opportunity to join their ranks to take part in the fight against terrorism. We also pledge our martyrs and our people that we will not save any efforts to defend them and that we will use our utmost endeavors to achieve dignity and freedom”.

This announcement of joining came after 10 days of the report of the SOHR, which published on the 16th of August the full details of defections of groups from the regime forces, where the report of the SOHR cited that The SOHR learned that tens of fighters of a faction operating as part of the Grand Battle of Al-Raqqah defected to another faction operating in the provinces of Deir Ezzor and Al-Raqqah. Specifically, the SOHR learned from several reliable sources that around 300 members and fighters of Al-Baggarah Youth Group led by Yasser Al-Dahla, defected from the SEF. This followed an exchange of accusations and disputes between both parties. Sources confirmed that both parties are still exchanging accusations regarding the reasons behind the Group defection from the SEF. Informed sources who are close to Al-Baggarah Youth Group, which joined the ranks of the SEF about two months ago, told the SOHR that Yasser Al-Dahla along with 157 of his allied fighters were expelled because of their previous affiliation with Ahrar Al-Sham Islamic Movement and because they held negotiations with the Military Council of Deir Ezzor, which is affiliated with the SDF, to join their ranks. Such negotiations continued until Al-Dahla and his allied fighters left the SEF a week ago.

In the same context, sources close to Al-Baggarah Youth Group, which joined the ranks of the SEF two months ago, confirmed to the SOHR that the reason behind the defection of 300 members and fighters led by Yasser Al-Dahla from the SEF – the military wing of Al-Ghad Al-Soury Movement (Syria’s Tomorrow Movement) headed by Ahmad Al-Jarba –  is the “rampant corruption in the ranks of the SEF and the exploitation of fighters to achieve political gains, in addition to the refusal of the Group, led by Al-Dahla, to participate in Al-Raqqah Battle for they give priority to the Liberation of Deir Ezzor to which they belong.”

Reliable sources confirmed to the SOHR that Yasser Al-Dahla arrived with his fighters a week ago to the areas where Deir Ezzor Military Council, which takes part in the Grand Battle of Al-Raqqah, is present. Both parties are working in close coordination to prepare for simultaneous military operations that should be initiated by both parties in the northwestern countryside of Deir Ezzor, the southern countryside of Al-Hasakah, then move towards the north of Deir Ezzor. Sources also confirmed that the division of operations is based on the tribal distribution in the area. Thus, Deir Ezzor Military Council shall start its operation in the areas where its tribe is present and vice versa.

It should be noted that Yasser Al-Dahla comes from Deir Ezzor Province. He used to be one of the commanders of Zei Qar Brigade, which was led by his father. It was through the ambush he set up for ISIS in Al-Dahla area in Deir Ezzor countryside that he became well-known. That ambush targeted Abu Osama Al-Iraqi, one of ISIS commanders, who used to be the Wali of “Al-Baraka (Blessing) State”. The brother of Al-Dahla was killed in that ambush in mid-2014. Al-Dahla then moved along with his allied fighters to Al-Qalamoun in Rif Dimashq and later to Idlib. He also participated in the battles of the northern countryside of Aleppo about one year ago. He then got injured in battles that took place in Ratyan. He finally moved to Jarabulus before joining the ranks of the SEF then Deir Ezzor Military Council.

 

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