Pro-regime militias 'loot and pillage' east Aleppo
Reports have emerged that pro-regime Syrian paramilitary forces are systematically looting homes of furniture, electronics, appliances and copper wiring in areas of recaptured east Aleppo.
Loyalist militias have been sweeping through abandoned districts of the city stealing appliances and furniture from homes since an all-out assault against rebels was launched in November, locals told Turkish state media on Tuesday.
The Aleppo residents, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said militiamen under the command of general Suheil "The Tiger" al-Hassan have cordoned off recaptured areas to allegedly "remove mines" then moved in to loot homes.
The pro-regime forces have stolen electrical appliances and copper wiring from thousands of homes in Aleppo, according to the sources.
"The stolen goods are transported to markets in the town of Jibreen, east of Aleppo, where they sold for as little as ten percent of their original price," they said.
They added that pro-regime troops stationed at checkpoints have also imposed exorbitant taxes on civilians passing through with personal possessions.
|Images on social media allegedly show troops
looting in Aleppo [Twitter/@Omar_Madaniah]
Under a landmark deal brokered by regime ally Russia and rebel backer Turkey, 35,000 rebels and civilians left the former opposition stronghold of east Aleppo last week.
Last week, local activist Nasra al-Halabi told The New Arab that the looting in Aleppo has been taking place in a systematic and open manner.
"They are taking everything they can; furniture, electronics, fridges, freezers to sell off," Halabi said.
"The militias are benefiting the most from this. They have looted everything left in the homes have not been destroyed."
Pro-rebel activists have shared images on social media of Syrian troops allegedly engaged in the looting of abandoned homes in east Aleppo.
The images show troops allegedly carrying and sitting next to household items stolen from homes in areas once held by rebels.
Earlier this month, a video emerged of Syrian regime soldiers bragging about stealing copper wiring, household appliances and furniture from homes in east Aleppo.
"All of you guys will be busy ransacking! It's incredible. I am going to assign the jobs as we pillage," an excited soldier filming the scene can be heard saying in the mobile phone footage.
The New Arab cannot independently verify the images and vidoes.