[Main COI reference: Targeting, 5.1]
There is little information available regarding the targeting of members of the government and the Baath Party in the rebel-held areas and other parts of Syria.
One source made reference to former Baath Party members as potential targets by the armed groups in Idlib. Another source reported that HTS conducted security operations which allegedly targeted ISIL members, Kurdish agents, as well as individuals ‘working for the Syrian government’. The newly established local resistance group Saraya Qasioun, which operates in Rural Damascus and Dar’a governorates, claimed attacks on personnel of GoS, the Baath Party and affiliated armed groups in April 2019.
As mentioned before, despite the wide presence of the SAA and government security apparatuses in the western region of Dar’a, the region witnesses unclaimed guerrilla attacks, IED explosions, assassinations and kidnappings of former rebels, government officials, Syrian army soldiers and security apparatus members. Reports further state that assassinations of the Syrian government agents and militia members increased in Dar’a governorate. It is not clear whether those agents were civilians or held official status. The newly emerged Southern Companies (Siraya Janoubiya) targeted a Baath office in eastern Dar’a with an explosion, threatening to target government facilities if they did not ‘stay away from civilians’. [Security 2020, 18.104.22.168]
See also the general COI summary under Persons associated with the Government of Syria.
Actions to which individuals under this profile could be exposed could be of such severe nature that they would amount to persecution (e.g. assassination, kidnapping). However, risks associated with the conduct of war, faced by the security apparatus and militias, are inherent to their position and are not considered to amount to persecution.
Not all individuals under this profile would face the level of risk required to establish well-founded fear of persecution. The individual assessment of whether or not there is a reasonable degree of likelihood for the applicant to face persecution should take into account risk-impacting circumstances, in particular the regional specifics (depending on the presence and activity of anti-government armed groups).
Nexus to a reason for persecution
According to available information persecution of this profile is for reasons of (imputed) political opinion.
! Exclusion considerations could be relevant to this profile (see the chapter Exclusion).