SOHR: Turkish forces disassemble Morek observation post

Turkish forces in Morek pack up, preparing to leave major observation post in northern Hama, according to SOHR.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported that the Turkish forces stationed in Morek observation post in regime-controlled areas in the northern countryside of Hama, started disassembling the observation post, in preparation for leaving it. It is worth noting that the observation post in Morek is the largest Turkish military post in northern Hama and the Turks have been stationed there for nearly two years and four months.

“The evacuation of Morek post is underway, although the Turkish president had repeatedly announced that regime forces have to leave all areas captured since April 2019, and despite his threats to expel regime forces in the case that they do not withdraw,” SOHR noted.

The Observatory said: “It is worth noting that Turkish forces have evaded paying the rent to the owner of the plot of land where the Turkish post is established. SOHR sources reported on September 21 that the owner of the land, on which the Turkish observation post has been established in Morek, continued asking Al-Sham Corps to pay the rent of his land, since the military corps had mediated between the land owner and Turkish forces to establish the observation post on his land. However, the Turkish forces and Al-Sham Corps evaded paying the rent due of the land for nearly two years and three months.”

According to SOHR, the Turkish-backed Al-Sham Corps informed the landowner that the contract was not recognized, and he could do nothing until the factions return to Morek.

It is worth noting that the land belongs to (M.M.), who kept trying to get the financial dues, but all his efforts failed, and he received nothing but lies and unfulfilled promises by Turkish forces and the factions.

Observatory sources reported early this year that Turkish forces, stationed at the “observation” post in Morek town in northern rural, continued to refrain from paying the rent of the land on which the post is located.

SOHR was confirmed by reliable sources that the Turks had not paid the land’s rents due for a year and a half to its owner, (M.M.)

“SOHR sources said that the landowner agreed with Al Sham Corps faction, which has strong ties to Turkey, that the lessee had to pay $700 for each dunam of land. However, no terms of the contract were fulfilled, as the Turks never paid the rents due. Moreover, the contract expired in early June and was not renewed, despite the fact that Turkish forces remained in positions, but on the contrary, Turkish forces expanded their presences by taking more plots of the land and started cutting down pistachio trees,” the observatory said.

On many occasions, M.M. uselessly tried hard to collect his dues, but “Turkish officers” told him that they had informed their leaders and awaiting a response. “The landowner complained to ‘Al Sham Corps’ faction, as it has strong ties to Turkey, but in vain,” said SOHR sources.

It is worth noting that the ninth Turkish post in Morek was established to monitor the “ceasefire”. However, it monitored nothing over the past months but the Russian and regime forces’ advances and seizure of the entire northern rural Hama, which brought the post within the regime-controlled areas.