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Iran recruited, funded pro-regime community in Damascus

| 2018-02-13 12:03:00
Iran recruited, funded pro-regime community in Damascus
(Zaman Al Wasl)- An Iranian official’s words regarding Iran’s role in saving and keeping Bashar Al-Assad in power are not new in the general framework, but they provided an important detail regarding Iranian involvement in the arming and training the regime thugs (Shabihah). Their actions pushed Syria to the brink as it increased the number of massacres and violations, and destroyed the structure of Syrian society which will take a miracle to make it reach a point where it can be repaired. 

Knowledgeable sources revealed for the first time the Iranian’s role in arming sectarian communities and towns in different parts of Syria, especially in Damascus and its suburbs. The regime suffered extensively in Damascus due to the complexity of the situation to the point where the regime appeared besieged by Damascus’ suburbs. 

Zaman al-Wasl sources said the Iranians distributed weapons to pro-regime Alawites in several neighborhoods and areas known to Syrians including Ash al-Urour (Barzeh, north of Damascus), Mezzeh 86 (Damascus), Qatna Residence (west of Damascus), al-Dimasin Residence (north west of Damascus) and other areas. 

The sources pointed out that the Iranians distributed weapons to large groups of youths and men living in these areas in cooperation with the al-Bustan Society which is owned by Rami Makhlouf, Bashar al-Assad’s maternal cousin and his funder.

By arming the Alawite population, the Iranians contributed to forming, what was then known as, the Popular Committees which were later transformed into the more organized National Defense militias. 

The sources confirmed the details mentioned in the Iranian version regarding the critical situation the regime and its supporters experienced in the early days of the revolution. They clarified that the situation was very turbulent and there was a widespread sense that the regime was sailing towards the unknown, especially when 80% of Syrian territory was outside the control of the regime. The situation continued like this until 2014 when it slowly started to change.  

Recently, a member of the Diagnostic Regime of Iran, Ali Agha Mohammadi, stated that Bashar al-Assad was about to leave the power, but Iran dissuaded him from this decision and pushed him to hold on to his position. 

Mohammadi said that General Hussein Hamdani, returned from Damascus to Iran to inform the leadership that Bashar al-Assad was determined to leave power and leave the presidential palace was he was trapped. 

“Hamdani told Bashar al-Assad [without referring to his title] that he should not worry, and that he should allow the distribution of arms to 10,000 civilians as they would remove the danger after they become organized,” according to Mohammadi. He added that Hamdani succeeded in “mobilizing 80,000 Syrians.”

Hamdani undertook the role of the supreme commander of the Iranian forces and militias in Syria before his death in Aleppo in the fall of 2015.

Mohammadi's comments came as part of a long series of statements made by Iranian officials in this regard, all of which focused on one point reiterating that they prevented the regime from collapsing, and that due to the Iranians alone, Bashar al-Assad remains in power.
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