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Russia uses regime-SDF tensions to expand presence in northeast Syria

Syrian Democratic Forces continue to besiege the Syrian regime in Hasakah province in northeastern Syria, amid fears of an escalation between the two parties.

ALEPPO, Syria — Tensions are escalating between Syrian regime forces and Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in Hasakah province in northeast Syria.

Clashes broke out in the city of Qamishli on Jan. 23 between the regime-affiliated National Defense Forces and the SDF-affiliated internal security forces known as Asayish. The National Defense Forces in Qamishli blamed the SDF for the clashes in a Facebook post, saying, “Some people were shooting in the air to celebrate a wedding that was taking place near the positions of the Syrian army. Following that, the Asayish shot at the Syrian army checkpoints in the area, which prompted an immediate response [from the army].”

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