Dozens of people have staged separate demonstrations in Syria’s northeastern province of Hasakah to express their outrage over a recent US airstrike against government forces, which killed a soldier and wounded several others.
Syria’s official news agency SANA reported that people converged in front of the Justice Palace in the provincial capital city of Hasakah as well as the Cultural Center in the Kurdish-populated city of Qamishli on Tuesday to denounce the US air raid on a Syrian army checkpoint in Tal Dhahab area the previous day.
The demonstrators demanded support for Syrian army forces, and popular resistance against the presence of occupying US forces – who violate Syrian sovereignty and steal the country’s national wealth – to force them out of their regions.
The participants also chanted slogans in condemnation of deployment of the illegal US and Turkish troops to Syria, and demanded vigorous actions against their violations and arbitrary practices.
Tribal leader Sheikh Mizar al-Musalat pointed out that the deadly US airstrike is a flagrant act of aggression against the Syrian nation and defenders of the homeland.
“We say to the American occupiers that their presence on the Syrian soil will not last long, and that they will be defeated sooner or later. The army will purge Syrian territories of their existence and terrorism,” he said.
Sheikh Abd al-Wahhab al-Issa, another tribal leader, also denounced the US airstrike as a “blatant violation that adds to the American occupiers’ long list of crimes, including plunder of crude oil, setting agricultural crops on fire and attempts to starve the Syrian nation by means of the so-called Caesar Act.”
Moreover, Archbishop Mar Maurice Amsih stressed that the US attack on the Syrian army checkpoint is an action “aggression and treachery that could have been expected from the occupying US forces.”
Since late October 2019, the United States has been redeploying troops to the oil fields controlled by Kurdish forces in eastern Syria, in a reversal of President Donald Trump’s earlier order to withdraw all troops from the Arab country.
The Pentagon claims the move aims to “protect” the fields and facilities from possible attacks by Daesh. That claim came although Trump had earlier suggested that Washington sought economic interests in controlling the oil fields.
The presence of US forces in eastern Syria has particularly irked the civilians, and local residents have on several occasions stopped American military convoys entering the region.
Syria, which has not authorized the presence of the US military in its territory, says Washington is “plundering” the country’s oil.
SDF militants kill civilian in protest against their presence in Dayr al-Zawr
Elsewhere in Syria’s eastern province of Dayr al-Zawr, militants affiliated with the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have fatally shot a civilian as people demanded their withdrawal during a mass protest.
Local sources, requesting not to be named, told SANA that residents of al-Rez village, which lies in the eastern countryside of the province, clashed with the US-backed extremists on Tuesday, prompting the militants to open fire. A civilian lost his life and several others sustained gunshot wounds as a result.
Security conditions are reportedly deteriorating in areas controlled by the SDF in Hasakah and Dayr al-Zawr provinces amid ongoing raids and arrests of civilians by the militants.
Locals complain that the SDF’s constant raids and arrest campaigns have generated a state of frustration and instability, severely affecting their businesses and livelihoods.
Residents accuse the US-sponsored militants of stealing crude oil and refusing to spend money on services sectors.
Local councils affiliated with the SDF have also been accused of financial corruption. They are said to be embezzling funds provided by donors, and failing to provide basic public requirements.