The local council in the province of Deir Ezzor warned of the dire consequences of the entry of Iranian militias to the province as this risks fueling sectarian tensions and extremism. The council said that Iran seeks to control a corridor of land extending from Tehran to Beirut.
In a statement, the council said that “the majority of the residents of Deir Ezzor are Sunni Arabs,” warning that allowing the Assad regime and the sectarian Iranian militias to control the province risks creating a long-term instability and sectarian tensions in the province.
The Assad regime’s control of Deir Ezzor, which borders Iraq in the east, would allow Iran to have a strategic corridor from Tehran to Beirut, the council said. It warned that these political and demographic changes would give rise to various forms of extremism in the region.
The council indicated that the people of the province were ready to administer the province, adding that Deir Ezzor was among the first provinces to rise up against the Assad regime through peaceful demonstrations. People of the province have fought a “liberation war” since mid-2012 and liberated over 95 percent of the province.
If the Assad regime and Iran use the fight against ISIS as a pretext to take control of Deir Ezzor, it must be noted that people of the province resisted ISIS and are still fighting it, the statement added. The council warned that the participation of troops from outside the province in the battle for the liberation of the province from ISIS would drag the area into political and ethnic conflicts. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)