20 km northwest of Daraa: on Wikimapia].
- 26. Multiple sources from Harak in Dara’a Governorate provided accounts of events that took place between 18 and 26 August 2012. Harak was once home to 40,000 Sunnis. The population of Harak has reduced to around 5,000 by the end of 2012. Most sourcesinterviewed were civilians who fled Harak when Government forces approached the town on 18 August and returned when Government forces withdrew on 26 August. One source interviewed was an FSA fighter present in Harak from 18 to 25 August. All interlocutors accused Government forces of mass killing in Harak at this time. All interviewees placed the number of civilians killed at over 500. The FSA source claimed that Government forces killed 565 people, of whom 30 were FSA fighters.
- 27. Government forces that came to Harak on 18 August included the Syrian Army’s 52 Brigade, Military Intelligence, Air Force Intelligence and Political Intelligence. Members of the Shabbiha and possibly members of the Iranian Republican Guard accompanied the army. Government forces remained in Harak for nine days. For the first eight days they encountered resistance from the FSA. Having exhausted their ammunition, the FSA withdrew. Government forces re-established control in the town, while local residents returned to Harak to find many burned homes. The corpses of some civilians who had remained in Harak during the military operation were found throughout the town. Others who stayed behind had gone missing.
- 28. The FSA fighter described how he and his colleagues moved into areas following Government forces. This source claims to have seen 400 civilian corpses. Some of the civilian casualties were caused by shrapnel, some by close range gunfire and some bore severe knife injuries. Some bodies had been burned. Among the dead bodies were women and children.
- 29. Interlocutors accused the Shabbiha of removing many bodies from Harak. It is alleged that the corpses were buried in the nearby 52 Brigade Headquarters, to cover up the killing. According to the FSA fighter, “Government forces tried to hide the bodies of dead civilians, but we could smell them.” Another interviewee suggested that the Syrian Army commanders responsible for the operation presented the civilian dead as killed FSA fighters.
- 30. ... the 52 Brigade headquarters is located near the town ... Harak became a port of call for defecting soldiers ... the Syrian Army established a base in Harak in May 2011 ... defectors forced the army out of Harak, killing around 10 soldiers ... The commission continues to seek additional verification of events in Harak from 18 to 26 August, in particular from Government soldiers involved in the operation at the time.
- 31. ... the commission is unable to conclude whether Government forces shelled Harak indiscriminately during the period between 18 and 25 August. However there are reasonable grounds to believe that Government forces and Shabbiha, committed the war crime of murder, killing persons hors de combat and civilians taking no active participation in hostilities at close range with gun fire and knives.
- 32. The burning of bodies, among them women and children, is particularly condemnable. ...
- Pro-government forces committed massacres in August in Daraya, where more than 100 people, including women and children, reportedly died, and in Harak in the Dara’a governorate, where witnesses said more than 500 civilians had been killed.
- Government forces involved in Harak included the Syrian Army as well as military and political intelligence units, the report said, noting that they may have been accompanied by members of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps. The panel said it was still investigating other reports of mass killings.
The following pages mention Al-Harak (partial list) between Aug.18-26, 2012.
- The authorities in Daraa province continued on Monday pursuing terrorists in the town of al-Hirak and arrested a large number of them and killed several others.
A source in the province told SANA correspondent that several of the killed terrorists were identified by the authorities.
- Our armed forces restore security in al-Harak in the suburbs of Daraa
- Relevant departments have hunted terrorists in the city of al-Harak the outskirts of Daraa and killed many of them, including Nizar al-Sabri Qadah, Imad Hamdi al-Chawamra and Iad Youssef al-Khayrat.
Daily Reports from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), partial list
- Aug 18: "Dera'a Province: Violent clashes are still ongoing in the city of al-Hirak between rebel fighters and regime forces who stormed the city today."
- Aug 19: "Dera'a province: Violent clashes are still taking place between rebel fighters and regime forces trying to storm the city of al-Hirak. The bodies of 4 civilians, detained last night by regime forces, were found this morning on the edges of the city."
- Aug 19: "11 were executed by regime forces after being detained yesterday from the town of al-Hirak"
- Aug 19, final: "13 were executed by regime forces after being detained yesterday from the town of al-Hirak"
- Aug 20:
- Dera'a province: 12 people have so far been killed in the province. Clashes are taking place between rebel and regime forces in the city of Dera'a, regime forces are using mortars, 1 rebel fighter was killed in the city. Dozens were wounded as a result of the regime bombardment on the al-Lihat area, which is considered an important rebel stronghold. The bodies of 2 civilians were found in the city of al-Hirak, they were summarily executed; clashes are still taking place over the city of al-Hirak.
- Aug 21: "In Dera'a province 19 civilians were killed. 15 civilians were killed as a result of the clashes and military operations in the town of al-Hirak"
- Aug 22: "8 were killed in the town of Hirak: 1 from wounds by the bombardment, 6 civilians were summarily executed and shot by regime forces."
- Aug 22, final: "10 were killed in the town of Hirak: 1 from wounds by the bombardment, 9 civilians were summarily executed and shot by regime forces."
- Aug 23 ... didn't pop up easily in a site search
- 24 August: "The corpses of 7 civilians were found today in the town of al-Hirak, they were killed during a military raid on the town these past couple of days".
- Aug 25: "In Reef Dera'a the town of Hirak and the area of al-Lijat were bombarded."
- Aug 26: Didn't pop up easily.
- Aug 16 10 in Daraa
- Aug 17 36 in Daraa, including 8 in Nawa whose corpses were burned … 16 martyrs who were slaughtered in Douma
- Aug 18 27 in Daraa; most of them in Hirak town
- Aug 19: 51 of them were in Daraa including 20 charred bodies in Herak
- Aug 19: "Daraa who gave 506 martyrs, including many families were martyred by the shelling, which was centered on most cities in conjunction with the time of iftaar..."
- Aug 20 20 in Daraa they include 4 from one family
- Aug 21: "32 in Daraa most of them in Herak and including 5 bodies in Nawa" (no further details)
- Aug 22 "17 in Daraa" Video: "Residents of Hrak, Daraa Fleeing from the Fear of Shelling" - "Wounded Child in Hrak, Daraa" - "Wounded Due to Shelling in Hrak, Daraa"
- Aug 23: 21 in Daraa
- Aug 24: 30 in Daraa
- Aug 25: 15 in Daraa
- Aug 26 "73 martyrs in Daraa, most of them were killed in a massacre in Busra Sham" (see 27th also). Nothing for Harak.
- Aug 27: Nothing on Harak
- Aug 28 Aug 28: Nothing but videos - "A Rocket That Targeted a Civilian’s Home in Herak, Daraa" - "Shelling at Hrak, DaraaContinues Despite the Withdrawal of The Free Syrian Army
- Harak, Deraa: Assad regime committed a horrible massacre today in the city resulted in over 70 martyrs, some of them from the shelling, and many of them executed. Here is a list of the names of most of the martyrs in Arabic:
(app. 70-80 names follow)
22-08-2012. "They stabbed my sons in front of me", "They stabbed them with knives" - A mother flees Al-Harak, Daraa. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s3QyFgIRZ9Q
Nothing in the reports the three days before the 18th. Fighting seems to have concentrated on Tafas, and on Aug 15 an item says (maybe related):
- Anti-government activists: Free Army militia withdraws from Tafas town of Daraa countryside, due to their leakage of ammunition.
- Mortar shells were fired on al-Harak town of Daraa province.
- Armed confrontations take place between Syrian Army and armed rebels in al-Harak town of Daraa countryside, what resulted in the death of Hussein Abdo Koman, Farhan Salamat, Hamzeh Kasabra and Hussein Salamat, and the arrest of others.
- Demonstration initiates in Enkhil town of Daraa countryside, in which protestors raise the symbol of “support al-Harak town and affected cities”.
- Daraa anti-government coordination says that tens have been killed during bombings by the Syrian Army units on points situated in al-Harak city of Daraa province. The coordination says that among the killed ones was the defected Lieutenant Fahed Mahmoud al-Samara
Nothing in the Aug 20 report
- Armed confrontations took place yesterday between Syrian Army and Free Army militia in al-Harak town of Daraa countryside, what resulted in the death of many insurgents, including Salah al-Din Adnan al-Khalaf, called as al-Dabbour, Muhammad Turki al-Kasadra and 5 others.
- Ahrar Horan battalion of Free Army militia abducts the chief of firefighters department, Colonel Muhammad Mahmoud al-Ahmad, in Daraa.
- Media sources: Free Army militia withdraws tactically from al-Harak town of Daraa countryside.
- Anti-government activists: Syrian Army units shell Kherbit Ghazaleh, al-Karak al-Sharki towns and al-Harak area of Daraa countryside.
- A videotape shows the members of al-Omari battalion, of Free Army militia, firing mortar shells on checkpoints for the Syrian Army, in which are situated near al-Harak town of Daraa countryside on Wednesday 22-8-2012.
- Armed conflicts take place between Syrian Army and militants in al-Harak city of Daraa countryside; resulted in the death of the leader of Horan Martyrs battalion Ahmad Muhammad al-Balkhi and Muhammad Abed al-Rahim Farhan al-Matar.
Nothing in Aug 24 report
- Daraa anti-government coordination published yesterday 3 names; Nashaat Muhammad al-Salamat, Kasem Muhammad Fayez al-Kaddah and Diaa Samir al-Salamat, claiming to be killeddue to clashes with Syrian Army in al-Harak town of Daraa countryside.
- The Free Army militia members; Muhammad al-Kaddah and Khalil al-Kaddah, get killed in al-Harak area of Daraa countryside.
- According to anti-government activists: Syrian Army artillery shells al-Harak town of Daraa countryside; resulted in 6 deaths.
- Anti-government gathering initiates in Enkhil town of Daraa countryside, in which protestors call for supporting al-Harak town.