Hundreds protest in Syrian regime-controlled Daraa after ex-rebels killed
Daraa was held by Syrian rebels until July 2018 when it reverted to regime control following a Russian-assisted regime assault and a ceasefire agreement.
Local sources told The New Arab’s Arabic-language service that the two former rebels were shot dead in the Daraa al-Balad area of Daraa city.
They blamed "regime agents" for the killings. The ex-rebels were identified as Ahmed and Mohammed Saisneh. The Saiasneh family played a key role in the first protests which happened in Daraa and Syria against the Assad regime during the 2011 Arab Spring.
In other incidents on Thursday, the regime allied mayor of the town of Al-Karak in Daraa province was injured after unknown assailants threw a hand grenade at him. Another hand grenade was thrown at a pharmacy in the town of Tafas, causing only material damage.
There has been a series of attacks and assassinations in Daraa province in recent weeks, some targeting regime soldiers and checkpoints as well as former rebels. The regime has never managed to fully regain control of the province after the rebels signed a ceasefire agreement.
Demonstrations against the regime are also frequent in Daraa province. On Friday hundreds of people turned out for the two former rebels' funeral, which quickly turned into a protest. The mourners chanted against the regime and the Iranian-backed militias providing it with military support.
Twitter users uploaded video footage of the funeral.
Protests against the regime and the international community's inaction on Syria also took place in the northwestern province of Idlib, Syria's last rebel-held area, which is currently being subjected to a ferocious campaign of aerial bombardment by the regime and Russia.
Every hospital in the south of the province has been destroyed by regime and Russian bombing.
The Syrian conflict broke out in 2011, following the brutal suppression of pro-democracy protests by the Assad regime.
More than 500,000 people have been killed and millions more displaced since then, mostly as a result of regime bombardment of civilian areas.