Insecurity in Southern Syria: Tracking Daraa, Quneitra and Suwayda (January – February 2021)
The Syrian regime forces took control of the governorates of Daraa and Quneitra in the summer of 2018 after reaching a reconciliation agreement allowing opposition fighters to remain inside their areas and join the forces of the Fifth Corps. This was without an actual presence of the regime forces and security services in Daraa western countryside and parts of the city of Daraa in addition to the return of official and service institutions to all regions of the province. However, this agreement could not improve the security situation in the region. Southern Syria has witnessed ongoing assassinations and clashes that left hundreds of dead and wounded for several reasons. These reasons include the regime forces’ attempts to extend the regime’s control to new areas in violation of the settlement agreement and the desire of internal or external parties to make the province an arena for settling scores. This is especially so with the involvement of Iranian-backed militias trying to expand near the Israeli border and its recruitment of local fighters in the ranks of its militia. This report monitors the most important security incidents and their causes in the three governorates of southern Syria; Daraa, Quneitra and As Suwayda in first two months of 2021.