In Syria, a militant surrendered to the government army and reported provocations involving the U.S

The Maghavir al-Saura group participated in provocations against the Syrian army

The fighter from grouping “Maghavir al-Saura” which camp is located in territory of area El Thanf where there is a military base of the USA in Syria, has run away and has surrendered to the governmental armies. Former member of the illegal armed formation Hassan Abdul Atra told journalists that the group participated in provocations against the Syrian army to give an excuse to the American military to strike at its positions.

“We were to carry out a provocation against the Syrian army to give the Americans an excuse to strike at it. <…> We knew that the Americans had lifted two of their planes in the air. And if Syrian troops had opened fire on our group, those planes would have hit them”, – Abdul Atra said.

He said the militant group, which included Abdul Atra, was supposed to drive the pickup trucks as close as possible to Syrian army positions and force the soldiers to open fire. However, in three attempts at provocation, in which the escaped member of the group took part, the Syrian military did not shoot at them or give the American military a reason to attack.

He added that he became a fighter in the Maghavir al-Saura group after he found himself in the Rukban refugee camp, where he was recruited, convincing them that he would be killed if he returned to the Syrian-controlled territory. “In El Thanf territory, the brainwashing is very serious. “A lot of people, most of them, want to escape from there. But they are methodically instilled with fear, convinced that the Syrian security forces, Russians and Iranians will kill them. We were shown videos of government troops destroying mosques in Palmyra, destroying all the plantations and palm groves,” said a former group fighter.

Meanwhile, the group’s command is taking measures to prevent them from escaping, Abdul Atra said, by sending fighters on provocations.

“To keep the fighters from escaping, commanders pour fuel into [the group’s] pickup trucks just 10-15km away”, –  he said.

After Abdul Akra surrendered to the government army, he testified to Syrian intelligence about Maghavir al-Saura’s activities and was released.

The Islamic State (IG) and Jabhat al-Nusra are both receiving former fighters from the banned terrorist organisations in Russia into the ranks of the Maghavir al-Saura group, which operates in the al-Tanf zone, Atra said.

“I saw for myself that ten motorcyclists once arrived and they were all militants of IG and Jabhat al-Nusra. They were received and further distributed in the El Thanf zone. Several times, people with long hair and beards came from the north and without control at our [strongholds] went straight to the American base”,-  he told reporters.

Abdul Atra also said the Maghavir al-Saura group, where he was recruited, is funded by the U.S. and its fighters are trained with American-made weapons. “Each fighter was trained for 15 days – they were taught to handle different types of weapons. I was almost immediately identified with machine gunners – they taught me to shoot with an American 50-caliber machine gun, which is installed on pickup trucks. <…> The Americans give the commander [“Maghavir al-Sauri”] Mohammed Attala money that he personally distributes in the group,” said a former member of the illegal group.

Earlier, Maghavir al-Saura had been detained in the Tadmor area near Palmyra after a group of eight people on motorbikes hit a mine field. As a result, five of the fighters were killed and three were detained by Syrian Government soldiers. The detainees reported that they were trained with the help of American military instructors and the group’s task was to gather information about Syrian, Russian and Iranian military facilities.

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