Despite Syria’s relative calm after more than 10 years of war, there is no stability, particularly at the security level, with high rates of crimes committed in the country. A recent survey of the Criminal Security Department of Assad’s government reveals that approximately 7,500 crimes have been recorded since the beginning of this year until the beginning of August 2021.
According to Hussein Juma, the Director of Criminal Security, the crimes mentioned are 366 murders, 3663 robberies, 120 counterfeits and 62 crimes committed with unlicensed weapons. Juma notes that the security authorities do not yet have any information or statistics on unlicensed weapons.
The statements of the security official in Bashar al-Assad’s regime; comes after the rise in the rate of use of firearms and bombs in crime and mass fighting follows, particularly in the capital Damascus.
Even Security Does Not Exist Anymore
Commenting on the statistics of the regime’s records, Ahmed Sweid, a security analyst and criminology researcher, says that the only thing which Assad’s regime used to be proud of, does not exist anymore. Sweid indicates that Syria currently ranks first Arab in crime and ninth worldwide according to Numbio webiste, in its 2021 statistics.
In 2019, Nimpeo’s crime site ranked Syria as the highest Arab country in crime, and 16th in the world out of 118 countries.
“The ranking of Syria on that site considers several factors, including the level of social security, the level of crime and theft, as well as armed conflict, crime and terrorist threats, Sweid adds. This suggests a complete collapse in the Syrian State system and a general inability to maintain all types and forms of security required.”
In 2020, Syria was stunned by a murder carried out by two young men in the Beit Sahem area, when they broke into a house, handcuffed the owner and then raped his wife in front of him. After that, they stabbed him, killed his wife and children, stole money, and burned the house before fleeing.
However, the survival of the husband contributed to the detection of the crime and the perpetrators.
In the same context, Sweid notes that the high level of corruption in the security and judicial services and the proliferation of patronage have contributed significantly to the high crime rate, especially since many criminals are aware that they have an opportunity to escape accountability by paying money and bribes.
This encourages the formation of an environment conducive to criminality. The spread of drugs, unemployment, poverty, widespread ignorance, and displacement are among a combination of factors that have helped the terrifying reality of Syria in general.
Sweid also considers the reality is an ideal environment for the Syrian regime, which, in doing so, seeks to vow society and cover up its crimes, in addition, those crimes might be used to arrest some opponents or activists in revenge campaigns.
Heinous crimes and trying to re-promote security services
Addressing the security crisis in Syria, the social researcher, Farouk Abdullah, recalls a series of crimes that have been recorded in Syria among the most heinous, considering that this brutality reveals the situation that the country has reached within 10 years of the regime’s war to stay in power.
Abdallah recalls the crime committed against the girl child, Haya Habib, aged 14, whose body was found burnt in Masyaf, Hama countryside late last year, noting that the details of that crime show the scale of the tragedy.
It is noteworthy that the regime’s forensics confirmed that the child was raped before being strangled and then burned by the perpetrator in order to obliterate all features of the crime.
In the same context, Abdallah explains: “The regime is considered primarily responsible for what Syria is witnessing, as it worked to create an entire generation that was raised on killing and the use of weapons, especially as it recruited large groups of children into the ranks of the militias that fought alongside it through what is known as The National Defense.
He points out that the Syrian society did not know this type of crime until after the year 2011 and the intrusive phenomena that befell Syria, foremost of which is displacement, child recruitment, and the current insecurity had never taken place before.
Syrian media have published a video of a crime committed by a Syrian father and mother against their two – year – old girl, who was buried alive for crying at night, which caused a state of shock among all the people.
The chaos pf weapons
In assessing the phenomenon of crime in Syria, political analyst Fadi Joumeh goes back to the beginnings of the Syrian revolution, noting that Bashar al – Assad’s regime consolidated crime in Syria through his amnesty in 2011, which released a large number of criminal offenders and armed them with powers, power and influence that enabled them to impose themselves in the Syrian equation.
Joumeh also considers that the first crimes committed in Syria were under the direct auspices of the regime, explaining: “On-the-ground executions, looting, theft of property and rape were first committed by regime forces and militia.”
These criminals have taken advantage of the advantages they have obtained from the regime to significantly expand the scope of their crimes, especially since many crimes are committed with firearms and bombs, some by former elements of the regime’s forces.
In the context, Joumeh asserts that the rise in the rate of crime does not make it possible to suspect that certain actors, primarily the Syrian regime, are supporting these phenomena, especially since they are those accused of drowning Syrian cities in drugs, which are the most important reasons for turning a person into a criminal because of his loss of consciousness and his permanent presence under the influence of narcotic substances.
Dureid al-Assad, the cousin of Bashar al-Assad, had earlier admitted the Syrian regime’s responsibility for drug trafficking in Syria. He wrote on his Facebook page that the drug shipment, which was seized by the Italian police coming from Syria last year, is not ISIS” is behind it, but rather the regime, adding: “If we want to make paper, we can say long live the national industries, and the wheels of the national economy started to spin again! Then we roll up the rolls with this paper, Captagon pills and drugs.”