Turkey is deploying Syrian rebel fighters to support Azerbaijan in its escalating conflict with neighboring Armenia, two Syrian rebels have said, Reuters reported.
The two fighters, from Turkish-backed rebel groups in areas of northern Syria under Turkish control, said they were deploying to Azerbaijan in coordination with Ankara.
“I didn’t want to go, but I don’t have any money. Life is very hard and poor,” said a fighter who had fought in Syria for Ahrar al-Sham, a group that Turkey has supported.
Both men said they had been told by their Syrian brigade commanders they would earn around $1,500 a month.
The fighter said he had arranged his assignment with an official from the Turkish-backed Syrian National Army (SNA) in Afrin, a region of northwest Syria seized by Turkey and its Syrian rebel allies two years ago.
The other fighter, from the SNA-affiliated Jaish al-Nukhba militia, said he had been told nearly 1,000 Syrians were set to be deployed to Azerbaijan.
The two men, who spoke to Reuters last week, said they expected to be dispatched on September 25, to guard facilities, but not to fight. Reuters was not able to contact them on Monday to confirm their location.