Tribal fighters with the Shueitat battalions have announced their readiness to fight the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in Deir-ez-Zor and Raqqa if they are given enough arms, even without airstrike cover.
The declaration came from the battalions’ leader in Istanbul, who explained they had been trying to get arms to battle ISIS. He expressed his confidence in the ability of the tribes to defeat ISIS, saying many sleeper-cells are waiting to start the battle, and they are more able to damage ISIS than the U.S.-led coalition’s airstrikes.
Moreover, the Shueitat leader explained the military power and size of ISIS had been inflated.
The hostility between ISIS and Shueitat tribes, numbering around 70,000 people in the eastern countryside of Deir-ez-Zor, started a while ago, when the state, which controlled Raqqa, took over two oil fields in July this year and beheaded 700 members of the tribe, most of them civilians.
Translated and edited by The Syrian Observer