Syria in December 2022
10 December 2022
- Hundreds of Syrian families fled from Assad’s control areas to the north due to hunger and cold (Orient News). More than 200 Syrian families and more than 300 young men from different regions in Syria under the control of the Assad militia have sought refuge in the cities of Afrin, al-Bab, Azaz, and Idlib province, which is under opposition control, in northwestern Syria over the past two days, according to Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper.
11 December 2022
- Syria’s Newest Mobile Operator Has a Hidden Link to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard (Observatory of Political and Economic Networks). Syria’s newest mobile operator is partly owned by a Malaysian company with multiple links to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard.
12 DECEMBER 2022
- Coalition Conducts Raid Against ISIS Suspects East of Deir Ezzor (Nedaa Post). Last night the International Coalition forces carried out a helicopter-borne operation targeting a number of people in the countryside of Deir Ezzor, on charges of belonging to ISIS.
- Suwayda Protesters Call for a General Strike in Syria (video) (Syria TV). Protests returned to As-Suwayda Governorate on Sunday a week after similar popular protests in which hundreds of people demonstrated against poor living conditions.
13 DECEMBER 2022
- Iran Aids Assad Regime with an Oil Tanker, After Syria’s November Supplies Were Below 50,000 Barrels per Day (Syria TV). An Iranian oil tanker arrived on the Syrian coast of Baniyas, days after the fuel crisis intensified in the areas controlled by the Syrian regime.
- Using “Al-Qaterji Tankers”, “SDF” Resumes Supplying the Syrian Regime with Oil (Syria TV). Dozens of empty tankers arrived in the city of Qamishli in the countryside of Hasakah, in preparation for supplying them with oil to be transported to areas controlled by the Syrian regime, which is witnessing a major fuel crisis.
14 DECEMBER 2022
- Assad’s Government Shuts Down All Agencies Due to Worsening Fuel Crisis, Calling it a Holiday. (Syrian Boursa & Enab Baladi). The Ministry of Internal Trade announced that it would once a month only subsidize the price of 20 liters at $9. The actual fuel price, however, remains at $11 per gallon.The government’s first imposed shutdown was announced on December 11, the second on the 18, and the last one claiming it is for the holidays runs from December 25 until January 1.
- UN Secretary General Warns Millions of Syrians may not Survive the Winter (Syria TV) The Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres , warned that the already dire humanitarian situation in Syria is getting worse, stressing that if the authorization for aid passage from Turkey to northwestern Syria is not renewed , millions of Syrians may not survive the winter.
- Local Groups and Assad Regime Forces Clash in Daraa Province (Enab Baladi) On Monday, the city of Dael witnessed clashes between local fighters and the Assad regime’s “Air Force Intelligence,” after which locals demanded the regime’s military presence in the area be limited.
15 DECEMBER 2022
- Operation “Truck No. 8”: Israel claims responsibility for striking an Iranian convoy in Albu Kamal (Syria TV). Israeli Army Chief of Staff Kochavi revealed on Wednesday that Israel targeted a convoy of Iranian trucks loaded with weapons on the Syrian-Iraqi border last month. Kochavi added that the Israeli army had “full intelligence” to hit “Truck No. 8” from a convoy of 25 trucks, because they knew that this truck contained Iranian weapons.
16 DECEMBER 2022
- Assad Regime Arrests Hizballah’s Main Drug Dealer in Southern Syria: Settling Scores or Appeasing Jordan? (Alaraby). The arrest of al-Ramathan [indicates] that the military security is trying to whiten the image of the regime in front of the world, specifically in front of Jordan. However, the truth behind this is a struggle within the Syrian security branches, which have become totally dependent on drug smuggling and promotion.
- Jordan Hands Long Prison Terms to 2 Captagon Smugglers (Arab News). Jordan’s judiciary on Thursday sentenced two men to long prison terms for attempting to smuggle nearly two million captagon pills into the country from Syria.
- Syria: Repatriations Lag for Foreigners with Alleged ISIS Ties (Human Rights Watch). More than 42,400 foreigners accused of Islamic State (ISIS) links remain abandoned by their countries in camps and prisons in northeast Syria despite increased repatriations of women and children in recent months, Human Rights Watch said today.
- Source: International Coalition Intends to Build a Base in Raqqa. (Baladi News). A Kurdish source said that the international coalition against ISIS is in the process of building a military base on the banks of the Euphrates River in the city of Raqqa.
21 DECEMBER 2022
- Syria TV Reveals Identity of ISIS Leader Targeted by US Forces in Northwest Syria (Syria TV). On Tuesday, private sources revealed to Syria TV the identity of the leader of the “Islamic State” organization (ISIS), who was targeted by the American raid in the city of Al-Bab, east of Aleppo. The targeted leader is called Basaa Ahmed Al-Sawadi, nicknamed “Abi Yasser Al-Yemeni”, and he is responsible for producing bombs in the ISIS organization in Syria.
- Assad’s Cousin Rami Makhlouf Releases a Statement Predicting a Major Event Bringing a Comprehensive Solution to the Syrian Conflict (FACEBOOK). In a Facebook Post Makhlouf said his calculations are based on what is known to some circles in Syria as the “science of numbers.” He said that within weeks there will be “a major event” that the entire world will talk about and that will “dazzle [Syrians] by its greatness,” after which “sanctions will be lifted, the displaced will return, Arab, regional and international diplomatic relations will be restored, and the Syrian file will be closed peacefully.”
22 DECEMBER 2022
- U.S. Commander and Bafel Talabani Make Joint Visit to Syrian Democratic Forces Commander Mazloum Abdi (Syria TV). On Wednesday U.S. Major General Matt MacFarlane and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) official Bafel Talabani made a joint visit to northeast Syria to meet with SDF Commander Mazloum Abdi. The two sides discussed the political and military situation in northeastern Syria and developments related to dialogue between the Syrian Kurdish parties. Talabani stressed the need to solve all problems in the region peacefully and through dialogue, and the need to maintain good relations with neighboring countries. Abdi stressed the close relationship between the “Autonomous Administration” of Northeast Syria and the PUK, which Abdi described as a continuous supporter.
- US Forces Arrest Six ISIS Members in Eastern Syria (Asharq Al-Awsat). U.S. Central Command announced on Tuesday that its forces carried out three operations in eastern Syria during the past 48 hours, during which they arrested six ISIS members, including a prominent ISIS leader known as “Al Zubaidi.” CENTCOM said Zubaidi was “involved in planning the organization’s attacks in Syria.”
- UN Says Syrians Are Suffering Worst Humanitarian Crisis Since the Conflict Began (Enab Baladi). UN Under-Secretary-General and Humanitarian Coordinator, Martin Griffiths, said on Wednesday that 2022 witnessed the breaking of negative records in Syria. In the last UN Security Council briefing of the year on Syria, Griffiths said Syria has not witnessed similar figures on the level of humanitarian needs since the start of the conflict in 2011.
28 DECEMBER 2022
- Erdogan announces new Turkish steps in northern Syria (Syria TV). Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan confirmed that his country is about to take new steps to “fill the gaps in the security belt”, 30 kilometers deep in northern Syria , reiterating Turkey’s determination to “continue its strategy of eliminating terrorism.” In a speech after chairing a meeting of the government in the Turkish capital, Ankara, Erdogan announced his country’s intention to move to “a good stage in the fight against terrorism, represented in destroying the infrastructure and resources on which the PKK relies.
- ISIS Attacks SDF-Affiliated “Asayish” Headquarters in Raqqa (Syria TV). An armed cell belonging to the ” Islamic State ” organization attacked the headquarters of the “Asayish” in the Diriyah neighborhood, northwest of the city of Raqqa, and targeted the security forces with automatic weapons…The ISIS cell attacked the center, which houses prisoners from the organization, with the aim of liberating them, but clashes broke out that led to the death of an ISIS member who was wearing an explosive belt, and the capture of another member who was also wearing a belt…The new attack comes in light of the US forces intensifying their strikes against the “Islamic State” organization in the region, after resuming their joint operations with the “SDF” on December 8.
29 DECEMBER 2022
- Syrians Protest Against Ankara’s Outreach to the Assad Regime (Syria TV). On Wednesday activists in northwestern Syria called for demonstrations and vigils against the rapprochement between Turkey and the Syrian regime, in support of the movement in southern Syria. Earlier on Wednesday, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar and intelligence chief Hakan Fidan arrived in the Russian capital, Moscow, to hold talks with Russian officials and officials of the Syrian regime.
- Defense Ministers of Turkey, Russia and the Syrian Regime Meet in Moscow (Enab Baladi). The Turkish Ministry of Defense announced the holding of a tripartite meeting that brought together the Turkish and Russian defense ministers and the government of the Syrian regime, in the Russian capital, Moscow, on Wednesday. According to a statement issued by the Turkish Defense Ministry, the Turkish Minister of Defense, Hulusi Akar, and the head of Turkish intelligence, Hakan Fidan, met with the Russian Minister of Defense, Sergey Shoigu, and the Minister of Defense in the Syrian regime government, Ali Mahmoud Abbas, as well as the heads of the Russian and Syrian intelligence sources.
30 DECEMBER 2022
- Çavuşoğlu Reveals the Assad Regime’s Demands and the Syrian Opposition’s Position on Turkey-Assad Normalization (Baladi news). Turkish FM Cavusoglu said both Turkey and Russia want to meet with the Syrian regime at the foreign minister level, but no timetable has been set for the meeting. He added: “We are also a guarantor of the Syrian opposition. We do not act against their rights. We are in constant contact with them, and our friends also know.” Regarding the Assad regime’s demand for Turkey to leave Syria, Cavusoglu said, “At the present time there are terrorist organizations that cannot be controlled. But when there is political stability and everything is going well in the country, Turkey will hand over these lands to Syria.”
- With Coalition Support, SDF Launches a Security Operation against ISIS in Eastern Syria (Syria TV). With the participation of the Internal Security Forces and Coalition Forces, SDF launched an early morning operation in areas from which ISIS launched recent attacks against al-Hawl camp, al-Hasakah, and south of Qamishli. The SDF said the operation will specifically aim to eliminate ISIS cells in the Al-Hol and Tel Hamis areas.