Syrian tribesman meet in Turkey to form anti-terror coalition

Leaders of about 50 Syrian Arab tribes gather in Turkey to establish a unified front against the YPG in northern Syria.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Members of Free Syrian Army holding their weapons and opposition flags pictured at Sermada near Idlib, August 12, 2012 in this file photo.

Updated Mar 15, 2017

Syrian Arab tribal leaders, whose territories were seized by Daesh and the PKK's Syrian wing PYD/YPG, have taken the first steps towards establishing a military and political structure to retake their lands. 

The leaders of about 50 tribes from Syria's Raqqa, Deir Ezzor and Al Hassakah regions held a meeting in Turkey's southeastern province of Sanliurfa on Tuesday to discuss ways to establish a unified front against the groups.

The meeting was assembled by the Al Hassakah and Euphrates Region General Assembly of Syrian Tribes and called for focusing "collective efforts to come together to combat the Assad regime and its Russian and Iranian allies, Iran's proxy Hezbollah, Daesh and PYD occupation."

According to a statement issued at the conclusion of the meeting, the event’s main objective was to discuss proposals for the establishment of a tribal force tasked with clearing the region of terrorism.

The proposed force would be led by the Syrian opposition Free Syrian Army, the statement added.

In an opening address, Sheikh Rafi al Rajo Ukla, a Syrian tribal leader, requested the international community’s support.

“We call on the international community to support our efforts to eliminate the terrorism of Daesh, the PYD and the Assad regime from [Syria’s] Al Hassakah and Euphrates regions,” he said.