Syrian Kurds intimidated, displaced by ISIS extremists

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Militants of the Islamic State. File photo

ARA News

Hasakah, Syria – Following their control of villages surrounding Tell Brak (45km north of Hasakah) after intensive clashes with the People’s Protection Units (YPG), militants of the Islamic State (IS/ ISIS) attacked Kurdish villages there and arrested dozens of civilians. 

Local sources in Tell Brak told ARA News that IS extremists stormed houses of Kurdish families and captured dozens of civilians. 

The same sources mentioned that the villages of Wardiyah, Qolo, Atta, Om Hajara, Khirbat al-Shikh, Qordisi, Kermsin, Karzil and others fell in IS hands.

“IS terrorists took the houses, prevented farmers from working in their lands without permission and imposed alms tax ‘Zakat’ on all Kurdish residents in the area,” said the sources.

This coincided with mass displacement of civilians precipitated by the fear of IS atrocities. 

Boshra Salman, resident of Tell Brak, told ARA News “My family were the last people to leave the village for fear of IS executions.”

“IS members also destroyed cemeteries in our village,” Salman added.

Salman mentioned the death of her cousin Abdulaziz Khalid Haji Hussien on the hands of IS militants “after arresting him for unknown reasons”.

“They prevented us from burying my cousin’s distorted body,” she said. 

According to Salman, most of the IS members who stormed the Kurdish areas near Tell Brak “are Arabs from neighboring villages.” 

Mahmoud Khisho, 16, from the village of Atta mentioned to ARA News his displacement with other people from the village after they were directly threatened by IS of being beheaded if they hosted any Kurdish fighters of the YPG in their houses. 

“Hundreds of students were deprived of proper education last year due to IS control of Tell Brak and its surrounding villages,” Khisho added.

The region still experiences sporadic clashes between IS members and the YPG forces.

 

Reporting by: Aynur Mohammad

Source: ARA News  

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