A destroyed building in Deir ez-Zor city, eastern Syria. File photo
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Deir ez-Zor, Syria – Syrian regime forces started evacuating the contents of the national museum of Deir ez-Zor, amid growing power of the Islamic State militants (IS/ISIS) in the province, locals reported Friday.
“The pro-regime forces transferred the museum’s contents in the midnight to an unknown destination,” an eyewitness told ARA News on the condition of anonymity for security concerns. “Several vehicles were parked at the entrance of the museum, and security members were loading them with sculptures and antiques.”
The source pointed out that evacuating the museum took place amid a power cut in the city’s neighborhoods.
Speaking to ARA News in Deir ez-Zor, civil rights activist Saray al-Din said that the regime’s security members collected the entire contents of Deir ez-Zor museum, and took them with large vehicles to an unknown destination through Deir ez-Zor Airport.
“This process is a prelude to the entire withdrawal of the regime forces from the city, similar to what happened in Palmyra,” he said.
The source added that buildings of the Assad Hospital, the University of al-Furat, the University of al-Jazeera and the State Security Division in Deir ez-Zor have been completely evacuated.
“Apparently, the regime is preparing to hand over the city of Deir ez-Zor to the terrorists of ISIS,” al-Din said, adding that families of the security officers have left the city days ago,” the source added.
Pro-regime forces have also evacuated the Ayyash military warehouses in Deir ez-Zor last week.
Reporting by: Serbaz Yousef
Source: ARA News