As part of a campaign to replenish its badly diminished fighting force, the Assad regime has detained nearly 1,217 young people mostly at checkpoints in Damascus since early November of this year. The detentions took place after the Assad regime circulated lists of names of tens of thousands of people of military age on checkpoints strewn across Damascus.
A report issued today by the Syrian Network for Human Rights said the lists included the names of young men aged 25 to 35, including state employees and university students. The lists do not exclude those who obtained an official exemption to continue their studies at university. Moreover, doctors and nurses who are over the age of 45 were summoned to the regime’s military hospitals.
The network said that families of the detainees reported that most of the arrests took place either at temporary checkpoints set up by regime forces specifically for this purpose or during night raids on houses. Residents of Damascus spoke about rampant checkpoints set up in residential areas, markets, shopping centers, universities and state institutions. Some young men were detained inside public transport buses.
The network explained that the detainees were transferred to the military police headquarters then deployed to different battlefronts across Syria.
The Assad regime is in desperate need for new recruits as its forces and allied militias continue their push, under Russian air cover, to retake land lost to rebels in strategic parts of the country. Assad’s army is now badly depleted as a result of high personnel losses and due to widespread desertions and defections. (Source: Syrian Coalition)