Syrian regime consolidates control over another Daraa town

Syrian regime consolidates control over another Daraa town
2 min read
19 October, 2021
Syrian regime forces have taken control of the town of Herak in Daraa province, following clashes with opposition fighters earlier this year.
Al-Herak saw conflict between regime forces and opposition fighters earlier this year [Getty File Image]

The Syrian regime has further asserted control over the restive southern province of Daraa with another town agreeing to a truce, following an uprising by locals earlier this year.

Residents in the town of Al-Herak have signed up to a Russia-brokered deal to end a stand-off between the Syrian regime and local opposition forces.

The deal involves local residents and notables "normalising their status" with the Assad regime, The New Arab's Arabic sister service, Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, reported on Tuesday.

A centre for registering locals who have signed up to the truce was established at the city's hospital.

Russia says that the process will allow locals in Al-Herak, Al-Soura, and Elmah who are on the regime's "wanted" lists to continue living freely in the towns.

Al-Herak residents have also started to hand over weapons to the regime, according to sources.

The town was among a number of areas in Daraa province which refused to take part in May's presidential elections, which saw Bashar al-Assad win 95.1% of the vote and were widely derided as a "sham" by the Syrian opposition and the international community.

Conflict broke out shortly after the elections, with regime forces besieging and shelling the towns.

Most of Daraa was under the control of opposition forces between 2011 and 2018. In 2018, following a regime offensive, opposition forces agreed to a Russian brokered truce with the regime but the province remained restive with frequent attacks on regime forces and protests against the return of regime control.

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Following the clashes earlier this year, the regime also retook control of other towns to the east of Daraa city, including Al-Ghariyah Al-Sharqiyah and Khirbet Ghazaleh.

It is believed that the regime is set to take control of more towns in Daraa province soon, including the town of Bosra Al-Sham, a key bastion of the Russian-led Eighth Brigade militia composed of former opposition fighters, who have not yet signed up to the settlement procedure.

Also on Tuesday, in Idlib province in northwestern Syria, the regime bombed homes and farmlands in the village of Qoqfin, killing one person and injuring several others.

Russian military aircraft also bombed three areas close to the town of Al-Bara in Idlib province.