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Tribes in Syria’s Deir ez-Zor back Assad in upcoming elections

Tribal sheikhs in Syria’s Deir ez-Zor, some of whom are said to have been previously associated with the Islamic State in the province, attended a caucus in support of President Bashar al-Assad for the upcoming presidential elections.
A Syrian boy walks under portraits of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad adorning a hospital in the eastern city of Deir Ezzor on Sept. 20, 2017.

ALEPPO, Syria — The Syrian government sponsored a caucus March 22 for Arab clans and tribes in Deir ez-Zor province in eastern Syria in a move that appeared to rally support for President Bashar al-Assad in the upcoming presidential elections.

The final statement of the one-day forum said that the clans adhere to the unity, land and people of Syria and that they “stand by the Syrian army under Assad’s command.” The forum sent a message to Assad pledging that “the sons of Deir ez-Zor will always remain faithful soldiers behind his wise and courageous leadership, as they believe it is the only thing capable of bringing Syria to safety.”

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