Large areas of farmland in Syria’s northeastern province of Hasakah have been burnt as part of what activists describe as a campaign by Turkish-backed Takfiri militants to destroy vital food crops.
Local sources, requesting not to be named, told Syria’s official news agency SANA that the militants set fire to roughly 3,450 acres of wheat and other crops in Farisah, al-Salhiyeh, and Tal Thalaj villages, which lie in the southwestern countryside of the key border town of Ra’s al-Ayn, on Wednesday.
The sources added that the act of arson is meant to descend hundreds of thousands of people living in the Jazira Region into poverty and famine, and denounced it as another war crime by Turkish-sponsored terrorists against ordinary Syrians.
Turkish-backed militants were deployed to northern Syria last October after Turkish military forces launched a long-threatened cross-border invasion in a declared attempt to push the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) militants away from border areas.
Ankara views the US-backed YPG as a terrorist organization tied to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which has been seeking an autonomous Kurdish region in Turkey since 1984.
More than 200,000 people have been internally displaced by the Turkish-led offensive, according to the United Nations.
On October 22 last year, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, signed a memorandum of understanding that asserted the YPG militants had to withdraw from the Turkish-controlled “safe zone” in northeastern Syria within 150 hours, after which Ankara and Moscow would run joint patrols around the area.
Several civilians injured in Aleppo bomb attack
Separately in Syria’s northwestern province of Aleppo, several people sustained injuries in a bomb attack.
SANA reported that the explosion ripped through a popular market in the Turkish-controlled city of al-Bab, and caused material damage in the area as well.
Syrian rally against US-sponsored SDF militants in Dayr al-Zawr again
Moreover, dozens of people have staged demonstrations in Syria’s eastern province of Dayr al-Zawr against the presence of the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
Residents of several towns and villages, including al-Ezba, Ekedat, al-Kasrah, Diban and al-Hawaij, on Thursday protested against the shutdown of local businesses, poor living conditions and prevalent chaos in their regions, according to SANA.