Aleppo residents feel Assad’s fist

Forced conscription, overnight raids by official thugs, extortion and blackmail by Assad’s security agencies are the lot of Aleppo’s residents since the town was “liberated.” The regime has given its security services, Baath party loyalists and armed militias a free hand against the citizens of Syria’s largest and once most prosperous commercial center. They extort monthly “royalties” from the rich not to detain their sons to fight for the army in battles in the faraway desert or to help them be smuggled overseas. The citizens of Aleppo have become a prime source of income for Assad’s military security, air force intelligence and political intelligence branches.

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