#SRO | DID YOU KNOW ? | THE MAN WHO OPENED #RAQQA GATES AND THE MAN WHO RESISTED TO REBELS - Two men played completely different roles in #Raqqa in March 2013. The first is general Khalid al-Halabi, state security head. The second is Mohammad al-Ahmad, military security head (1).
#SRO | DID YOU KNOW ? | In March 4, 2013, most of state security evacuated toward Division 17 or defected under general Khalid al-Halabi orders. We know today that he asked army to withdraw from E-#Raqqa entrance (Mashlab area), de facto opening city gates to rebels (2).
#SRO | DID YOU KNOW ? | Regime could clearly resist to #FSA, islamists factions and jihadis but general Khalid al-Halabi was influenced in choice by Mohammed Faisal Al-Huwaidi, a sheikh and tribal leader in al-Afdaleh tribe in #Raqqa governorate who rallied rebels in 2012 (3).
#SRO | ARCHIVES | #RAQQA CITY IN PROTESTERS HANDS BEFORE ARMY TAKEOVER - Few remember that #Raqqa had mostly fallen to protesters in March 16, 2012. As every friday, protesters took the streets in Raqqa but this day, they were tens of thousands (1) :
#SRO - ARCHIVES | #RAQQA CITY IN PROTESTERS HANDS BEFORE ARMY TAKEOVER - Rivers of protesters leaving houses to join the protest. No police, no army in the streets on this day of funerals and protest. Mansour, Hattin, Thisreen, Baytani... all areas (2) :
#SRO | ARCHIVES | #RAQQA CITY IN PROTESTERS HANDS BEFORE ARMY TAKEOVER - Thousands of protesters invading the old city (video : mansour) and marching on governorate buildings with no regime presence in streets this March 16, 2012 (3) :
#SRO | EXCLUSIVE - #SRO could identify one of the first #IS sect spokesmen in #Raqqa province, also seen in Vice News Report (august 2014). Abu Musa is now identified as the founder of the Liwa al-Sheikh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah that was announced in February 2013 in Tal Abyad (1).
ADD.: the man was a former worker in a farm but also a religious influencer in #Tal_Abyad from 2012 to 2013. He participated to crimes against humanity in W-Tal Abyad countryside alongside #IS and #Nusra. After the #IS sect takeover of #Raqqa, he joined the terrorist group.
ADD.: It must be noted the name of his brigade : sheikh al-Islam ibn Taymiyya, a medieval sunni religious personality, one the influencer, by his teachings, of the late Abdl al-Wahhab. Abd al-Wahhab is one the major influencer of the Saudi state religion as #AQ and #IS ideas.
1/ This thread is a bit horrific. ERT, first response team is now exhuming bodies from biggest massgrave in #Raqqa. The Panorama massgrave located in the SW of the city in a former park where daesh burried killed fighters & civilians they used as human shields who died.
2/ Also civilians who tried to flee them and were caught & killed were burried here. And people who were executed during their reign. From a nice garden before war daesh turned it a place of horror. It is thought 1200-1500 bodies are there. Sofar 75 were exhumed. Many more to go
3/ All the bodies exhumed are documented as well as possible so families looking for lost relatives can find them again and reburry properly. Sadly many bodies remain unidentified. Possibly also bodies of people they took from anywhere in syria/iraq to Raqqa & killed there.
#Lavrov now: De-confliction b/n #Russia & #US in #Syria wotking wrll, when there's a need Americans turn to us for explanations of certain things and we do the same
#Lavrov now: When we intervened in #Syria in Sep'15 #ISIS wad at the gates of #Damascus. Not a single power that are today raising voices about humanity, rights, etc moved their finger to prevent #Daesh from almost capturing the city & making it the capital of their caliphate
#Lavrov on @realDonaldTrump tweet on #Idlib: #Trump's right-we need to avoid a humanitarian crisis there. That's what we always try to do w/ humanitarian corridors & other coverups for civilians unlike Americans,say,in #Raqqa who just ironed the city. Now they want to cover Nusra
Je reviens de Syrie (nord-est jusqu'à la route de Deir Ez Zor).
Des parties de mon séjour se sont déroulées dans un cadre formel (ONG, autorités kurdes), d'autres fois j'ai pu partir de mon côté (en taxi, avec un ingénieur anglophone retraité de Hassaké).
Je garde la primeur de ce que j'ai vu pour le reportage que j'étais partie faire là bas, mais je peux déjà partager un ressenti.
Préciser simplement, avant toute chose, que je n'ai pas "vu la Syrie" : j'ai vu un bout de la situation, à un instant T, en des lieux donnés.
Bien sûr il y a l'état des infrastructures et de certaines villes, comme Raqqa, dont j'ai déjà rapidement parlé lorsque j'en suis sortie (cette visite s'est faite hors de tout encadrement, notamment du SDF, j'y étais par moi même, libre de mes mouvements).
Interesting thoughts by #Russia Defense Minister Shoigu in his interview to Italy's Il Giornale days into #Putin@realDonaldTrump summit:
1."Since US lawmakers experts been calling on #US gov to clarify its #Syria strategy,our country not the only one who does not get it"
2."If there's some basis for #US actions in #Syria,it is too contradictory to be called a strategy.I'd like to recall that initially,it was about defeating #ISIS,then about preventing re-emergence of IS&now to preserve mil presence in to deter #Iran’s alleged influence"
3."One cant help thinking that #US chief objective in #Syria is to prevent situation from stabilizing,prolong the conflict,undermine SYR territorial integrity by creating enclaves not controlled by the gov in Syria’s remote regions.Oppstn received training in US-controlled areas"
PRESSER: #Russia's FM #Lavrov & #Jordan/ian FM Safadi: 1. Say they're satisfiedd w/ "close & useful interaction" over #Syria both in trilateral format (w/ #US in Amman) & via Astana where Jordan is observer.
Lavrov says #Rus appreciates JRD mediation b/n #SAA&opposition militants
2. #Lavrov, #Safadi discussed "some concrete measures of how to address issue of #Syria/n refugees in #Jordan."
Both reinforced need to comply w/ trilateral agreements over SW de-escalation zone,including,Lavrov stressed,"part on fight w/ #ISIS, #HTS that control 40% of the area"
3.#Lavrov said the SW zone "remains a priority" since as terrorists get driven out,conditions will be created for return of refugees,incl those based now in #Jordan. #Moscow insists broad international coop needed to restore #Syria's infrastructure,create jobs...
A group calling itself "The Committee of Peaceful movement in #Raqqa" called for a peaceful uprising against the Kurdish-led #SDF. The statement demanded the Syrian Democratic Forces to leave the city and hand it over to its people.
Clashes have broken out between the “#Raqqa Revolutionary Brigade” and the Kurdish-led #SDF in the northern suburbs of Raqqa, northern #Syria.
The Kurdish #YPG component of the #SDF have besieged the HQ of the #FSA “Raqqa Revolutionaries Brigade” and clashed with them at several points. They have called upon the people of #Raqqa to go out and demonstrate immediately against these militias and their actions.
⚡️⚡️⚡️#SDF reported to prepare for redeploying their forces from mostly Arabian cities of #Manbij, #Raqqa and #Tabqa. The decision was taken 4 day ago in talks with Gulf representatives in Ain Issa. The Saudi and Emirates occupation of #Syria's East will replace the #US one
#Russia's UN envoy Nebenzya starts speaking at UNSC meeting on #Syria, alleged #ChemicalAttacks in #Douma, promises "he'd have to say a lot and the delegates'd have to listen"
1."#UK, #France follow #US in destructive policies in SYR, use blackmail, threaten RUS,
2.Even during #ColdWar Western diplomats didn't afford such tone vis-a-vis #Russia, "You understand what you did [in #MIddleEast]?No, you don't!Will you ever stop your geopolitical experiments?Do you understand what dangerous line you are driving the world to?
3.What's next for us?The most dangerous line of the confrontation is in #Syria.
In #EasternGhouta radicals have been terorrizing population for many years. Now people are being freed..But external sponsors prevent this progress.Terrorists wanted to continue blackmailing civilians
THREAD on #US, #Russia in #Syria:
1.This is getting serious:RUS Chief of Staff says US been preparing sabotage groups at Al Tanf to stage checmical attacks to serve as pretext to attack SYR. According to #Moscow, some of the subversive groups already transferred to #FSA positions
2.MoD claims some chemicals,dozens of detonating fuzes disguised as packs of cigarettes been delivered to town of Dariya. More staged attacks being planned in towns of Al Ghabid, Qalb Loze 25 km NW #Idlib to where 20 containers of chlorines been delivered.
3.Massive info campaign beign prepared to accompany the provocations to pin the blame on #Assad,#Russia.MoD says #Moscow sees "Signs of preparations for possible strikes. In eastern part of Mediterranean,Persian Gulf,Red Sea cutting edge of sea-based cruise missles being deployed
THREAD: The full story of Syria's #Raqqa 'The Capital of Liberation' from the uprising until the devastation:
Raqqa is the Syrian city, situated northern eastern Syria. 1970s the Euphrates dam was built and turned the poor small town of Raqqa into a city.
During the evolution process of Syria, Raqqa's share of development projects was small & most of the resources were stolen by Regime's officials and the state budget was being stolen by Hafiz Assad and his loyal elite. Therefore Raqqa city remained one of the poor cities of Syria
#SRO - What happened in Kusham area is the first real and strong #US action to protect its interests, the #SDF and its military advisors... Be sure this will reinforce #SDF recuitment policy and popularity... (1)
#SRO - Since weeks, as #Afrin offensive began and since #US administration thretened to cut support of clashes against #Turkey, recruitment for #SDF ranks was decreasing seriously (it was clear for #Raqqa governorate and #Manbij area) (2).
#SRO - #US intervention to strike a regime offensive, killing dozens and destroying dozen tanks, isn't about to erase #US stance on #Afrin, but population in Northern Federation to consider their ally with another point of view : yes, #US can be a good ally when needed... (END).
Thread on the current situation in #Raqqa city, Syria 👇👇
Improvised explosive devices are littered across the city and surrounding neighbourhoods. In the first week of 2018, our teams in #Syria treated 33 patients with blast injuries from Raqqa. 13 of the 33 patients MSF treated were children.
Since the active conflict subsided in Raqqa on October 17th 2017, our teams have received 271 people with blast Injuries, 64 were already dead or dying on arrival at our clinic doors.
We started a new year (I hope the last) of the Syrian civil war. But 2017 has been the most important year & the result of inflection point of the war in 2016 with many political & military developments : (1)
The first military operation of #SAA was Wadi Bara (23/12/2016 - 29/1/2017) which finished with the evacuation of rebels from Wadi Barada & the North montainous area in the border with Lebanon. At the same time other forces advanced in E.Ghouta reaching some parts of Hazrama (2)
ISIS terrorists are committing ongoing genocide against the #Yazidis in #Iraq & #Syria
According to the #UN, women&girls as young as nine are being sold as slaves 2 ISIS soldiers who regularly beat them & rape them, re-sell them&if they try 2 escape, kill them #YazidiPlight
The @UN report focuses on the Islamic State’s attack on #Yazidis in #Sinjar-#Iraq in Aug.2014
The subsequent genocide of the #Yazidi pple, which has included mass murder,beheadings,the rape of women&children&the buying&selling of women&girls as sex slaves at marketplaces&online
“over 3,200 Yazidi women & children r still held by ISIS. Most are in #Syria where Yazidi females continue 2 be sexually enslaved & #Yazidi boys, indoctrinated, trained & used in hostilities. 1000s of Yazidi men & boys are missing. The genocide of the #Yazidis is on-going.” @UN