Tel Temir, Syria – Forces loyal to the Democratic Union Party (PYD) started a campaign to collect donations from shopkeepers in the town of Tel Temir in Hasakah province, in northeastern Syria.
Imposing money donations gave the campaign a different slant, ” people were threatened by the PYD-linked Assayish forces and were humiliated when refusing to donate”, a shop owner in Tel Temir told ARA News.
Shopkeepers pointed out that they were closing their shops to avoid the campaigners, as “it is difficult to donate under such bad financial conditions”.
Speaking to ARA News in Tel Temir, Ahmad al-Hussein, a shopkeeper in the town, said that the donations are being collected under the pretext of funding the Assayish security forces “as protectors of civil peace in the area”.
“On Saturday, the donation committee came to a newly-opened shop and demanded its owner to donate. The owner was apparently unable to donate due to his financial situation, as he just started a business to make a living. However, the committee humiliated the shop owner and threatened to send him to prison to be prosecuted for refusal to support the protectors of his family,” al-Hussein said.
According to al-Hussein, those who refuse to cooperate with the PYD-linked donations’ committee “are accused of collaboration with terrorists of the Islamic State against the Kurdish people”.
Local sources said that several shop owners in Tel Temir permanently closed their shops and left the town on Saturday.
“Unfortunately, the PYD and its allied forces do not try to understand the people’s hard living conditions amid the ongoing crisis,” said Hamed Abdulsalam, a resident of Tel Temir. “You either cooperate with the donations’ committee or be accused of supporting the Islamic State extremists.”
The PYD-linked forces of the Assayish are performing the role of police in several Kurdish-majority areas in northern Syria. They reportedly took the responsibility of maintaining civil peace after the withdrawal of pro-Assad security forces from these areas in summer of 2012.
Reporting by: Salar Ayobi
Source: ARA News
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