Gang members under the Turkish state: “We have been deceived”

Members and commanders of the gang structure called “Sultan Murad” which has received support from the Turkish state have talked about their practices against the citizens in the region and said, “What they said and what they did were complete opposites.”

Revolutionary Forces in Shehba have released 37 members and commanders who fled the Sultan Murad gang structure and surrendered to them on October 7, 2017.

ANHA spoke to the gang members about why they left the group. The gang members who fled the Sultan Murad gang structure and surrendered to the Revolutionary Forces said the group is supported by the fascist and invasionist Turkish state to subject Syrians to mistreatment.

Gang member Şadi Mustafa Şêx Hilal is from the Qabir Fidda village in the Al Xab region of the state of Hama. Şadi said he joined the group to make some money because he was in a bad financial situation. Şadi Mustafa said, “I joined the group 3 months ago. They paid me 300 dollars a month. As soon as I joined, they made me a commander for a group without any training.”

Şadi said the Sultan Murad gangs mistreat the people of the region and that the gang members did ugly things to citizens: “One of the commanders of this group was very brutal. He shot at citizens, he tortured them with knives and other instruments.”

According to Şadi’s report to ANHA, any member of the gang who refused to carry out execution orders against civilians was executed by the commanders.

The gang groups claim they “work to liberate the Syrian peoples from the government (Baath) regime” in the brochures they hand out. But Şadi, who was a commander in this structure, says otherwise. Şadi Mustafa said this group has practices completely contrary to their propaganda and that he decided to flee because of that, ending up surrendering to the Efrîn Asayish Security Forces.

Another gang member who fled, Welid Memduh El Cesim is also from the Al Xab region of Hama. Welid said he joined the Sultan Murad gang group after the Turkish state’s “Euphrates Shield” gang structure launched attacks on the region. At the time, these gang groups had invaded locations to the north of Aleppo like Jarablus and Bab under the sponsorship of the invading Turkish state.

El Cesim said he joined the gangs for the same reasons, but that he hadn’t fathomed there could be such vile and horrific treatment of civilians in the gangs. El Cesim said executions, hijacking and stealing are very commonplace among the gangs and that these practices are a part of their daily routine.

El Cesim said the Turkish army commanders had direct relationships with these gang groups: “The Sultan Murad Group received their orders directly from the Turkish army commanders and soldiers. There was a constant communication between them in order to continue with their evils.”

Welid El Cesim and Şadi Mustafa called on all the youth of the region who have been deceived by the lies and propaganda of the gang groups to leave these evil gang structures.