Saturday, February 12, 2022

US-Backed Militants Abduct, Train Syrian Minors in Raqqah Province - Tasnim News Agency

(Tasnim) – US-backed Kurdish militants affiliated with the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have reportedly kidnapped dozens of teenagers in Syria's northern province of Raqqah for training.
As they continue to loot natural resources and public assets in the Syrian areas they control, the SDF militants raided the city of al-Thawrah, also known as al-Tabqah and located approximately 55 kilometers (34 miles) west of Raqqa, last Friday and kidnaped at least 45 teenagers between 14 and 16 years of age, Syria’s official news agency SANA reported, citing local sources.

The report added that the abducted teenagers were moved to Ayed al-Jazeera camp to receive military training from the US-sponsored militiamen, then the minors were transported to al-Sadd military barracks in the city of Manbij on separate occasions to avoid suspicion.

The sources added that the teenagers will receive military training for a nine-month period at the barracks, and will be given fake identity and personal information for fear of international inspections into underage recruitment and use of children in hostilities and armed conflict.

The news comes as security in the SDF-controlled portions of Syria's northern and northeastern provinces of Raqqah, Hasakah, and Deir Ez-Zur has deteriorated.

Local Syrians reported that the SDF's regular raids have created a situation of dissatisfaction and uncertainty, harming their businesses and livelihoods significantly.

Residents accuse militants backed by the United States of stealing crude oil and refusing to spend money on services.

Financial corruption has also been claimed of the local councils affiliated with the SDF.

In September of last year, SDF militants supported by the US invaded the al-Hawl refugee camp in the northeastern Syrian province of al-Hasakah, preventing the arrival of much-needed food for the thousands of refugees stranded there.

The development occurred a day after more than 25 juveniles developed nausea and breathing issues after being allegedly given varied quantities of sleeping tablets to be smuggled out of the refugee camp to a training camp run by SDF fighters, according to SANA.

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