Fri 06 Dec 2019

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Local Councils in Aleppo Countryside Begin Livestock Survey

Man counting the number of sheep in northern Aleppo countryside - 26 March 2019 (Syria Recovery Trust Fund)

Man counting the number of sheep in northern Aleppo countryside - 26 March 2019 (Syria Recovery Trust Fund)

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Enab Baladi – Aleppo countryside

The Ministry of Agriculture of the Interim Government (IG) is working to organize the agricultural and livestock production in the northern Aleppo countryside, in cooperation with the local councils. Through the provision of agricultural licenses to farmers and livestock breeders in the region, the IG is seeking to coordinate the distribution of agriculture support.

The Ministry announced the initiation of a project to conduct agricultural and livestock surveys. It asked citizens in the areas of Marea, Azaz, Suran, al-Bab, Jarablus and al-Rai to review the Agricultural Statistics Center between May 6 and 10, along with their land deeds and agricultural licenses, or leases, mortgages or any other proof of ownership, notarized by the local council or the Mukhtar.

Mohammad Fawzi Abdallah, head of agriculture at al-Rai Local Council, said that the General Organization For Seed Multiplication in the Interim Government, in cooperation with local council, decided to carry out the survey in order to distribute canvas bags to licensed farmers.

The purpose of the livestock license is to survey the quantities of livestock in the region for future projects, and for farmers and breeders to better benefit from the support provided by organizations and charitable foundations.

In an interview with Enab Baladi, Abdallah that the cost of the agricultural and animal licensing to be collected from farmers and breeders is 50 SYR per dunam of agricultural land, 500 SYR for each cow, and 25 Syrian pounds for each sheep. He indicated that the General Organization For Seed Multiplication promised to provide feed and vaccines for livestock breeders, in addition to canvas bags for farmers.

Local Procedures for the Conservation of Livestock

In recent months, livestock smuggling proliferated, including of sheep, cattle and goats from the northern and eastern parts of Aleppo to other areas, both those controlled by the Syrian regime and under the control of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). This caused increases in the price of meat, be it beef or lamb, and has provoked widespread reactions among citizens.

One of the reasons that pushed breeders to smuggling is the saturation in the livestock market, which has caused breeders to sustain losses due to the poor purchasing power of citizens relative to the available quantities.

In January, local councils in several areas issued a warning against the smuggling of livestock to other areas. In the event that livestock is to be transferred from one place to another, local councils require the approval of the agriculture directorate in the local council.

The councils attributed the reason for the decision then to “the preservation of public interest and non-waste of livestock, and the prevention of high prices of meat and the transmission of communicable and infectious diseases.”

Furthermore, local councils in the city of Azaz and the town of Kafra in the northern Aleppo countryside signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the organization International Humanitarian Relief (IHR), on 12 April, to support livestock projects and the veterinary clinic in the city.

The local council in the town of Kafra, in a statement to Enab Baladi, said that the project provides support for livestock by establishing a clinic for the treatment of animal diseases for a full year. The MoU also includes support in the form of feed, to be granted for small livestock project for four months.

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