Homs rebels: Army must leave, or we’ll start killing civilians (Op-Ed)

A handout image released by the Syrian opposition's Shaam News Network shows smoke rising from Bab Amro neighbourhood in Homs on June 19, 2012 (AFP Photo)
A peace activist is claiming the Syrian Army is reinforcing with heavy weapons and locating snipers at the borders with Lebanon and Turkey while clashes continue in villages in central Syria.

Consultant and peace activist Christoph R. Hörstel told RT that his information “is directly obtained from Syrian security personnel of various origins personally taking part in battles and other operations, and/or close relatives of such personnel – some are even well-known people."

Almost all towns are under the government control except for Homs, where rebels and ‘terrorists’ have asked the army to leave – otherwise they have threatened to kill the civilians.

Syrian officials say up to 5000 civilians have been ‘taken hostage’ in Homs, the cradle of the Syrian uprising. The Syrian army refuses to bargain with the insurgents mingled with ‘terrorists’ in the city in Syria’s west, and has not started an assault. The army has halted operations, in order not to cause loss of life among the ‘hostages’.

However, Homs’s area is completely surrounded and is being monitored by the army. The same Syrian officials state that what appears on international media as Homs demonstrators are in fact these ‘hostages’.

For the last three days ‘terrorists’ have been trying to infiltrate across the Lebanese border, but face gunfights with the regular army supported by Iranian commandos. Infiltrating mercenaries try to move directly to Damascus, but suffer heavy losses already at the borders, say Syrian officials.

­Christoph R. Hörstel for RT

­Сhristoph R. Hörstel is managing director at Hörstel Networks, Government & Business Consulting. http://syria-help.blogspot.de/

­The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.