The Assyrian members of the pro-government National Defense Forces (NDF) and Gozarto Protection Forces (GPF) will remain armed in northeastern Syria, a Syrian military source told Al-Masdar News.
According to the source, the NDF and GPF will continue to control checkpoints inside of Al-Hasakah, despite previous claims that the Syrian Army would redeploy troops to this province.
The source continued that these forces are battle-tested and well-armed, adding that they work closely with the army inside of Al-Hasakah.
The NDF has been active in Al-Hasakah since 2014; they are made up of both Arab, Armenian, and Assyrian locals. Meanwhile, the Gozarto Protection Forces are exclusively local Assyrians from the Al-Qamishli District.
The GPF, formerly known as the Sootooro, has participated in several battles in northeastern and eastern Syria, including the battle for Al-Qamishli, Al-Hasakah, Deir Ezzor, and Quraytayn.