Iran is Taking Advantage of the Fighting in Eastern Syria’s Deir ez-Zur to Improve Positions Toward Aleppo

One of the possible developments we wrote about two weeks ago, as a result of the fighting in eastern Syria, is starting to take shape.
Sheikh Nawaf Al-Bashir, a prominent Arab tribes leader in the Dier ez-Zur region, announced a few days ago the establishment of a new militia called the “Hashemite Tribes Regiment”. The purpose of this new force is to fight the Kurdish forces in order to strengthen the Arab tribes’ control in the region east of the Euphrates River. According to different accounts, Iranian Quds Force officers, supported by the Assad regime, are behind this latest development. Al-Bashir was also in contact with Russian factors.

The establishment of this new force, if indeed supported by Iran, is expected to further weaken the Kurdish forces in east Syria and impair the Western coalition’s integrity and its ability to operate in this region.
It is important to note that these developments are taking place against the background of the continued fighting in the region between the Arab tribes and the SDF forces and in light of the increasing voices heard among the tribes calling for the escalation of the fighting.
Considering all of this, it would not be unreasonable to estimate that the trend of rapprochement with Iran will increase in the near future, further intensifying the effects mentioned above.

This move is designed to strengthen the Iranian grip in eastern Syria, especially in the territories east of the Euphrates and along the entire border with Iraq. These areas are currently inaccessible for the Shi’ite axis’s forces, and gaining a foothold in them will allow Iran to use the northern route of the land corridor, leading to Aleppo.

Sheik Nawaf Al-Bashir
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Picture of Boaz Shapira

Boaz Shapira

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