As the daily bloodbath in Syria continues, so do Syrian army defections.
The social media site, YouTube, has witnessed videos showcasing defections of soldiers. While the list of defectors has been dominated by males, the latest defection announcement comes from an Alawite woman, Zubaida al-Miqi, whose work for the Syrian army’s recruitment department is now history.
In the YouTube video, Miqi claims to be the first female officer to defect.
“Oh people of my country, oh people of my sect; the conflict ensuing in the country is between the oppressor and the oppressed, between the regime and the citizens. The struggle has never been about sects or minorities, but the regime is trying to turn it into a sectarian clash and to demolish the purpose of the revolution. Oh army friends, let us claim victory for our country out of pride and nationalism. Show people that the country’s geography is not a sectarian one. Show them that national unity surpasses sectarianism. Teach people that sectarianism destroys a country,” she said.
Miqi continued by quoting verses from the Quran, saying that murder of others is haram or prohibited.
She also concluded her defection statement by thanking all of whom supported her decision and helped her defect. She announced that she would join the Free Syrian Army (FSA) wing in Damascus and its suburbs.
Defections have peaked over the last few months but there is no exact figure to sum the number in total.
Earliest records of defection came in July 2011, when the Turkey-based Colonel Riad al-Asaad announced his defection and the formation of FSA.
FSA has sought to unify fighters and defectors against regime of President Bashar al-Assad by forming a military council tied with the country’s main opposition group, the Syrian National Council.