Turkey Supported Armed Groups in Syria: On Their Way to Bankruptcy Strategically and Financially

By Khaled Iskef

Global Research, April 04, 2021

In the shadow of the decline of the value of the Turkish lira and the weakness of the Turkish economy resulting from many factors, the most important of which is the loss of profits from the tourism season on the one hand and the policies of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan‘s son-in-law Berat Bayrak when he was Minister of Finance and how the value of the lira declined during his reign and his attempt to court Germany, perhaps for some aid from here or from over there.

These financial problems called on Ankara to financially limit the support of its militants and mercenaries in northern Syria by cutting the salaries.

There may be other reasons behind the suspension of salaries, among them the pressure on the factions to implement a Turkish plan that is being prepared in northern Syria and its features are still ambiguous.

 As it has been reported that Turkey has stopped the salaries of the so-called Watani Army militants loyal to it in northern Syria about two months ago.

The sources said that a state of discontent and restlessness prevails in the ranks of the Ankara factions militants against the background of their salaries being cut off, noting that the Turkish intelligence services responsible for communicating with the armed factions and financing them, have deducted sums from the salaries of the militants in exchange for military allowances.

It should be noted that members of the Syrian National Army are organizing a protest in the city of Al-Bab, east of Aleppo, due to the delay of the officers ’salaries for more than 70 days.

The sources pointed out that the last salary received by the Ankara factions militants from the Turkish side was in the first month of this year, while the funding was cut off during the months of February and March, without any clarifications from the Turkish side about the reasons for stopping salaries and when they can return again.

The sources stated that the suspension of salaries was preceded by another similar incident, during which Turkish intelligence officials promised the armed factions financial rewards after they took control of Tal Abyad in the northern countryside of Raqqa. However, Turkish officials later delayed the delivery of the bonuses and then evaded them, and no amount was paid to the militants.

On the other hand, sources reported that there are 500 militants who were transferred again from northern Syria towards Libya via Turkey. Ankara is trying to reduce the economic burdens left by supporting armed groups in northern Syria by transferring them to several countries, as happened in Libya and Azerbaijan.

Against the background of these activities, Al-Nusra once again raises the prices of fuel in its areas of control.

Where the Al-Nusra Front organization once again raised fuel prices within the areas under its control in northern Syria, where its affiliated Watad company, which has a monopoly on the sale and import of fuel from Turkey, issued the decision to raise prices, justifying it by the decline in the value of the Turkish lira against the US dollar.

Sources indicated that Al-Nusra raised the price of a gas cylinder to 88.5 Turkish liras, after it was 80.5 Turkish liras, and set the price of one liter of imported gasoline at 6.30 Turkish liras instead of 5.31 Turkish liras.

As for the price of a liter of imported diesel, it increased by half a Turkish lira to become 6 lira, after it was 5.49, at a time when the price of refined diesel was recorded at 4.27 Turkish lira.

This increase in fuel prices is considered the second imposed by the Al-Nusra Front during the current month, as the prices previously witnessed a rise on which was described at the time as unprecedented in terms of its high percentage, which came in conjunction with the collapse of the value of the Turkish lira. People in areas controlled by armed groups are forced to deal with them

This is what leads to general discontent on the part of the people of the areas occupied by these armed factions. This matter did not stop the Levantine Front from its desperate actions to compensate for the lack of Turkish support for it, so it stole equipment, machinery and tractors from the people living in the city of Afrin and sold them in dollars on the pretext that the people did not pay an imposed tribute. by them

Where the sale of agricultural tractors in the city of Azaz, which is under the control of the Turkish-backed armed factions in the northern countryside of Aleppo revealed the scale of the thefts that the militants commit against civilians and their property that are confiscated from them under various pretexts in various regions, to sell them in other areas under the pretext that they are war spoils.

The sale of tractors by the militants of the Levant Front faction in favor of the so-called local councils in the Azaz area, so it became clear later that these tractors were stolen from people in the city of Afrin and its villages, under the clause of confiscation because of their owners’ refusal to pay Royalties on their agricultural business.

Sources indicated that the Shamiya gunmen sold the stolen tractors at the amount of $ 2,300 to several “local councils” in the villages of the Soran district of the Azaz area.

The sources added that other sales took place in the village of Kafrghan, and not only agricultural tractors, but also, several motorcycles stolen from Afrin, which were sold to militants as war spoils taken by the SDF.

Since Turkey and the armed factions took control of it, Afrin region has been witnessing continuous robbery and looting of their properties, in addition to the displacement that is taking place. 

They were presented to him by the various factions that are expelling the people of the region from their homes and lands, and housing the militants and their families in their place.

All these desperate actions and behavior by the Turkish factions are nothing but confirmation of their involvement in the looting and theft of factories, facilities, and infrastructure in the areas, they occupied during the previous conflict with the Syrian army.


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13 February 2020The original source of this article is Global ResearchCopyright © Khaled Iskef, Global Research, 2021


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