Syria rebels of the Army of Islam. File photo
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HOMS – Islamist rebel factions threatened to attack the Druze minority in Syria’s southern Quneitra Governorate, accusing them of supporting the Syrian regime, local sources reported on Tuesday.
Islamist rebels of the Qadissiyat al-Janoub Coalition vowed in a statement to attack the Druze-populated town of Hadir if the residents refused to support them in their fight against the Syrian army in the Quneitra Governorate.
“The pro-Assad forces have imposed a siege on rebel-held areas in Quneitra, where thousands of civilians are suffering starvation. Our fight against the regime will continue until breaking this siege and defeating pro-Assad militias in the governorate. Thus, we call on the Druze community to cooperate with us and allow our fighters to enter al-Hadir town and create a supply route; otherwise, we’ll be obliged to open the route by force,” rebel factions of the Qadissiyat al-Janoub said in a statement.
Since the outbreak of the Syrian Civil War in 2011, the Druze religious minority in southern Syria has taken a neutral position towards all parties. This stance has not prevented hundreds of Druze soldiers from fighting alongside the Syrian regime’s army, against the armed opposition.
“We are a peaceful minority group, and we tried to remain neutral throughout this conflict to protect our families. However, the Islamist groups accused us of supporting the Assad regime,” Druze citizen and rights activist Wissam al-Amir told ARA News in Quneitra.
“We’ve received many threats from the Islamists. The people of al-Hadir town are now terrified after the recent threat from the Qadissiyat al-Janoub’s fighters,” al-Amir said.
Reporting by: Haytham Mustafa
Source: ARA News