For the fourth day in a row, hundreds of civilians took at streets in different areas of the city of Raqqa to protest against the forcible recruitment into ranks of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the Syrian pro-opposition news outlet Baladi News reported on May 30.
The pro-opposition blog Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently said that the SDF’s security forces (Asayish) opened fire at the protestors in the district of al-Meshlab and arrested four of them. The source added that Asayish had banned humanitarian aid from entering al-Meshlab a day later, as a punishment for the civilians there.
Many demonstrations in several locations in #Raqqa city and the protester were shouting “Raqqa is Free Free and #SDF should get out “, the video is for one the protests today . pic.twitter.com/xrUlM6t4mA
— الرقة تذبح بصمت (@Raqqa_SL) May 29, 2018
The protests erupted in Raqqa on May 27, when Asayish attempted to arrest several young men after accusing them of evading the military service in the SDF. This attempt led to direct clashes between the SDF and one of its Arab armed group. While the US-led coalition was able to stop the clashes within hours, the protests intensified.
Similar demonstrations against the SDF’s conscription law were organized by thousands of Arab n the districts of Geweran and al-Nashuah in the southern part of al-Hasakah city on May 26. Prior to that, locals of the northern city of Manbij organized a general strike against the law.
Local observers believe that the protests against the Kurdish dominated-SDF will continue in the upcoming days as the tension between Arabs and Kurds is higher than ever. Meanwhile, the SDF appears to be determined to impose its conscription law on local Arabs despite that the majority of them are against it.