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Friday, December 22, 2017

Former officer of the Free Syrian Army: "250 ISIS members sent from Jarablus to Europe"


Former officer of the Free Syrian Army: "250 ISIS members sent from Jarablus to Europe". (ANF).

Mihemed Casim El Hesen was an officer of the Free Syrian Army, which participated alongside other groups in the Turkish-led invasion operation "Euphrates Shield" on the triangle area between Jarablus, Azaz and Bab. He then joined the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

Speaking to the Mezopotamya News Agency (MA), El Hesen said Turkey has very close ties with Islamist groups such as ISIS and Al-Nusra.

33 years old Mihemed Casim El Hesen is from Dêir ez-Zor and was a former police officer. In 2012, according to his own statements, he joined the FSA. After the invasion of the area by the ISIS and Al-Nusra, he went to Hatay province south of Turkey, then to Jarablus, where the Turkish army and the Euphrates Shield groups have taken control. "There I was responsible for the contact between the tribes from Dêir ez-Zor and the Euphrates Shield commanders”, he says.

El Hesen also provided significant information about the operation on Jarablus which Turkey entered with the Euphrates Shield and took over from ISIS in just three hours. He told:

"Turkey negotiated the takeover of Jarablus with ISIS before the operation. Russia and the Syrian regime were also informed about this negotiation. There was a meeting between Russian, Syrian and Turkish officials in Karkamış before the operation. When the Turkish troops entered Jarablus, 250 selected ISIS fighters were taken to Kilis and Antep via the Karkamış border crossing. One of the people responsible for the transport was me. Later I learned that these ISIS fighters had been sent to Europe. Other ISIS fighters were brought to Bab, Hama and Raqqa with their families.”

Commenting on his own motives for moving from the FSA to the SDF, El Hesen explained: "The FSA came into being to fight the regime, but now it serves the Turkish state. Turkey uses the FSA only for its own interests and gives ISIS much more support. Many relatives and acquaintances of mine told me how the SDF approached the people after the liberation of Manbij, Raqqa and the rural areas of Dêir ez-Zor. That's how I realized what it really is. Many of the Euphrates Shield fighters and especially those from Dêir ez-Zor want to go with their families to SDF-controlled areas. I talked to 300 friends of mine in the Euphrates Shield and told them how the SDF behaves me. Now they all want to come.” Read the full story here.

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