Arima, Syria

Arima (Arabic: العريمة, ‹See Tfd›Kurdish: Erîma), also spelled Orayma or Arimah, is a town and seat of a subditrict (nahiya) in Al-Bab District, located 20 kilometers (12 mi) northeast of the city of al-Bab and 65 kilometers (40 mi) northeast of Aleppo in northern Syria. In the 2004 census, it had a population of 2,839.[1] The town of Qabasin is also to the south-west, and closer than Al-Bab. Manbij city is to the north-east.


Location of Arima in Syria
Coordinates: 36°28′26″N 37°43′09″E
Country Syria
Time zoneUTC+2 (EET)
  Summer (DST)UTC+3 (EEST)

Syrian Civil War

During the Syrian Civil War, the village came under the control of, first the rebels in 2012, and then ISIL in 2014. During its Manbij offensive in the summer of 2016, Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) forces approached the village. In the morning of Monday 20 June 2016, ISIL fighters attacked the Syrian Democratic Forces that had besieged Manbij city, from the Arima village, the Manbij Military Council said.[2][3][4] The clashes continued until the afternoon and were repelled by SDF forces.[3] The Al-Shahba documentation centre said ISIL militants arrested 143, mostly Kurdish, civilians in the neighbourhood of the village on 20 June.[5][6] On 22 June Arima came back in the hands of ISIS, but was retaken by the SDF on 3 October.[7][8] According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights as of November 2016 the town was under the control of Manbij Military Council.[9]

Buffer zone

Early 2017 saw military clashes in and around Arima between Free Syrian Army (FSA) forces within the Turkish occupied zone and the Manbij Military Council (MMC). President Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey had declared that Operation Euphrates Shield's target after al-Bab would be to rid Manbij of the mostly Kurdish People's Protection Units.[10][11]

On March 1, 2017 an agreement between the SDF and the Syrian government, established a buffer zone along the border between the MMC controlled Manbij area and the Turkish buffer zone. The deal brokered by Russia gave control of five villages including Arima to the Syrian government, and by March 4 the Syrian Army had entered the zone. By 13 March Russian troops had also entered the zone.[12][13][14] Some further shelling of Arima by the FSA took place after the Syrian army had taken up positions in the town.[15]

On 25 December 2018, Arima was again placed under Syrian Army control after a deal with SDF. This was in response to renewed threats of a Turkish-led operation against the SDF in and around Manbij.[16][17] According to the pro-YPG ANF News, the SDF also continued to maintain a presence in the village through the al-Bab Military Council, Manbij Military Council, and Kurdish Front.[18]


  1. "2004 Census Data for Nahiya Arima" (in Arabic). Syrian Central Bureau of Statistics. Also available in English: UN OCHA. "2004 Census Data". Humanitarian Data Exchange.
  2. "Civilians flee ISIS stronghold surrounded by US-backed forces (VIDEO)". RT. 21 June 2016.
  3. "Second ISIL counterattack fails to break siege on Manbij, June 21, 2016". 21 June 2016.
  4. "Manbij Military Council: 142 gang members have been killed". ANFNews. 21 June 2016.
  5. "Isis arrests 700 civilians north syria mostly kurds, June 21, 2016". 21 June 2016.
  6. "ISIS are starting to mass arrest and kill the Kurdish civilians in Northern Aleppo. This comes as the SDF approach these areas, June 20, 2016". 20 June 2016.
  7. ", June 22, 2016". 22 June 2016.
  8. Musa Keilani (8 October 2016). "Kurdish corridor". Jordan Times.
  9. "Violent clashes renewed in the countryside of Arima and "Euphrates Shield" forces advance at the expense of the "Islamic State"". Syrian Observatory For Human Rights. 25 November 2016. Retrieved 3 December 2016.
  10. "Turkish PM says operation in Manbij 'meaningless' without US, Russia coordination". Rudaw. 7 March 2017. Retrieved 18 June 2017.
  11. van Wilgenburg, Wladimir (23 February 2017). "US coalition continues to assist SDF-led Manbij Military Council north Syria - ARA News". ARA News.
  12. "Atlantic Council analysis: How Russia beat Turkey in Syria". Tornos News. 29 March 2017.
  13. "Russian Troops Deploy Southwest of Manbij Following Syrian-Kurdish Negotiations". Yahoo News. 13 March 2017.
  14. van Wilgenburg, Wladimir (5 March 2017). "A Kurdish-Russian deal against Turkey!". ARA News.
  15. "Damascus Calls on UN to Make Turkey Stop Aggression and Withdraw Army From Syria". Sputnik. 10 March 2017.
  16. "Breaking: Kurdish forces handover town near Manbij to Syrian Army". Al Masdar News. 25 December 2018.
  17. "Assad regime forces enter YPG-held village west of Syria's Manbij". Daily Sabah. 25 December 2018.
  18. ERSİN ÇAKSU (29 December 2018). "Intense traffic in Arima against occupation". ANF News.

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