Russia has informed the command of the Eighth Brigade of the Fifth Corps in Daraa governorate that it is closing the Salma Camp in rural Lattakia, where its fighters are gathering.
After 2018, some of the Eighth Brigade fighters, led by Ahmed al-Awda, had gone to the camp and remained there until now.
A source familiar with the details of the report told al-Souria Net on Monday that the Russian side informed Awda’s command of its intention to close the camp, two days ago.
The source added that Moscow had given the fighters who would leave the camp the option to deploy on two fronts, the first being the fronts of the Idleb governorate and the second being the fronts of the Syrian Badia region.
The source, who asked not to be named, denied that there were cuts to the salaries of fighters from the Russian side, explaining: “Monthly salaries will be cut for people who refuse to fight on one of the two fronts.”
There was no comment from Awda forces, a former leader of the opposition forces, who recently joined the Russian-backed Fifth Corps under the settlement agreement in Daraa, in late 2018.
The reasons for the closure of Camp Salma, according to the source, are the intention of the Russians to return civilians to their homes in the area there. He noted: “The Salma area is a camp for Awda’s fighters in particular.”
About a year ago, Moscow pressured Ahmed Awda and his forces to fight on the Syrian Badia fronts against ISIS.
Awda has about 2,000 fighters, each receiving $200 per month.
Bosra al-Sham, located in the eastern countryside of Daraa, is the most prominent stronghold in which they are active.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.