On both sides of the highway connecting the towns of Abu Rasin and Tal Tamer, located in al-Hassakeh countryside in North-Eastern Syria, Earth mounds, Syrian government forces points and Russian flags turn the area into military barracks surrounded by trenches and sandbags.
Fifteen military points belonging to the government forces were seen along with three Russian army bases, the largest of which was at the al-Battle station west of Tal Tamer, while villages around the area were empty of residents, the doors of houses were blocked and windows were destroyed by military operations two years ago, after the Turkish army and armed Syrian factions loyal to Operation Peace Spring took control of the nearby town of Ras al-Ain and a section of its countryside, turning farmland into abandoned areas and farmers feared to cultivate or approach it.
At the end of last month, Russian forces withdrew to their positions to “pressure the SDF” to hand over the area to their allies, while government forces deployed on the lines of contact between areas under the Turkish army and the factions loyal to them west of the road, and those that ” SDF” is spreading to the East.
These areas are also witnessing ongoing military skirmishes between ” SDF” and pro-Turkish opposition factions, and Russian troop outposts and regular army positions in the towns of Tal Tamer” and Abu Rasin” came under fire from Turkish army attacks.”
“Aday Rbo”, commander of the Syriac Military Council, one of the formations of ” SDF” and its forces are deployed within the borders of “Taseer” and assyrian villages west of Tel Tamer, said that the military attacks target the area of” Zarkan” and its countryside, especially, the villages of “Dardara”, “Tal al-Ward”, and “Um Harmal”, “These villages are bombarded with cannons and heavy weapons, due to their importance and their occurrence on the front lines, as the reconnaissance planes of the Turkish occupation army fly over the area and target our points,” he said.
Commenting on the Russians and the regime’s silence on repeated attacks on its points, he added: “The Russians and the regular army have not yet responded to the sources of fire, these forces are in the area formally.”
According to local residents, Russian forces patrol almost daily along the seam zones, and Moscow is seeking through its moves to impose a new military and field scene in northeastern Syria, and to make a breach in favor of government forces at the expense of Washington-backed” SDF”.
Salam Hussein, of the SDF’s relations office, noted that Russia’s attempts to pressure the SDF are aimed at “bowing to their demands to hand over their areas to regime forces loyal to Assad.
Our military forces did not yield to their demands as a result of their adherence to their land, they have a national project focused on the unity of Syria and finding political solutions inside Syrian territory,” he said, describing the Russian withdrawal as “blackmail” and concluded by saying: “Russia’s message is that if you do not meet our demands, we will leave open room for Turkey to occupy more territory.”
Translated by: khoshbin sheikho.