Turkish-backed faction arrests 13 civilians for ransom: SOHR
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Sultan Muhammad al-Fateh Brigade, a faction of the Turkish-backed Syrian National Army (SNA), has reportedly carried out an arrest campaign against civilians in Afrin, the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reports.
SOHR reports that 13 civilians were arrested in the Ma'amal Oshagy village in Rajo district on false charges, including offenses such as "insulting Turkey, dealing with the former Autonomous Administration, and not fasting during Ramadan,” in order to collect ransoms.
Most of the civilians were released after paying ransoms ranging from a hundred to a thousand dollars. The faction also prepared a list of names of residents in the village who would be arrested in the following days to collect more ransoms.
Furthermore, another faction took over several agricultural fields belonging to arbitrarily displaced civilians in the northern Aleppo countryside.
A commander of the Sultan Muhammad al-Fateh Brigade confiscated a civilian's car from the village under the pretext that the civilian used it to transport members of the former Autonomous Administration in Afrin. The commander then forced the civilian to pay $1,500 to get his car back.
This incident is part of the ongoing systemic harassment of the Turkish-backed Syrian National Army (SNA) forces against Kurds in Afrin, aimed at pushing civilians to immigrate and confiscating their properties.
The latest report by the United Nations Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria, released in March, documents how Turkish-backed groups continue to conduct unwarranted arrests and detentions of Kurds.
It also noted that some of them were subsequently released, “only after a payment had been made to members of the SNA military police.”