BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:50 P.M.) – The Syrian Army has reportedly raised a new formation within its order of battle by the name of Al-Sanadid Al-Jazzera Shield; the unit is designated for service in the country’s eastern province of Raqqa.
Reports state that Al-Sanadid Al-Jazzera Shield is part of the Syrian Army’s 5th Assault Corps, being mostly made up of fighters from the Shammar tribe.
It is said that the town of Az-Zur Shammar will be the headquarters of Al-Sanadid Al-Jazzera Shield.
So far only 150 troops belong to the new unit, making it – for the time being – the size of an under-strength company. At this early phase of the formation’s existence, it is unknown what kind or amount of heavy weapons (i.e. tanks and artillery) it has.
Interestingly enough, the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces posses a powerful Arab faction (not in anyway linked to the Free Syrian Army) called the Al-Sanadid Force which is also made up of Shammar tribesmen; the armed group has long thought to have a secret pro-government leaning.