Armed clashes continue in Deir ez-Zor
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) on Wednesday reported that tribal gunmen continue to target military posts of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in Deir ez Zor.
Armed clashes on Wednesday erupted in Shuhail in Deir ez-Zor. Moreover, on Tuesday a member of a local tribe was killed during armed clashes with the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
Damascus-backed insurgent groups have continued to attack SDF forces in Deir ez-Zor since August, after the SDF arrested Abu Khawla, the former dismissed head of the Deir ez-Zor Military Council, leading to fierce skirmishes.
“Iran wants US forces to get out of here and from the entire region. It is one of their main goals, as it is for the Syrian regime and for Turkey. This has been plainly evident since the beginning of the so-called Astana process,” SDF Commander-in-Chief Mazloum Abdi told Al Monitor’s Amberin Zaman.
“If the Americans leave Syria, they will have to leave Iraq and vice versa. The troubles we had in Deir ez-Zor recently with Abu Khawla were part of this plan to put pressure on us from all sides. There is a very dangerous escalation going on,” he added.
On Sunday, the pro-Syrian government page, The Sons of Jazira and Euphrates Movement, published a video of Al-Akidat tribal leader Sheikh Ibrahim Hifl with armed men, promising that he would return to his guest house in Dhiban, that was one of the centres of an anti-SDF revolt in early September.
The SDF on Tuesday also met with local Al-Akidat tribal leaders together with US soldiers in response to the recent threats.
The SDF said the tribal leaders “urged the international coalition to support the Syrian Democratic Forces in countering groups associated with the Syrian regime and Iranian militias which aim to sow chaos and confusion in the region.”
Moreover, the leadership of the SDF on Wednesday also held a meeting and “emphasized the Syrian regime’s role in the recent events in the Deir [ez-Zzor] countryside, highlighting its involvement by deploying armed groups to our areas with the aim of causing discord and chaos.”
They also discussed the restructuring of the city’s Military Council, after Abu Khawla’s removal and arrest.