Syrian Social Nationalist Party (Syria)

Country: Syria
Details of Formation: The Syrian Social Nationalist Party (SSNP) was founded in 1932 by Antoun Saadeh, a Greek Orthodox Christian from Lebanon. The party has an armed wing. The group forged an alliance with President Hafez al-Assad in the 1970s during and after the Lebanon war. Many SSNP members felt harassed by Syrian security services on Syrian soil. This diminished under Bashar al-Assad. In 2005, one faction of the party, the Hardan-Mahayiri branch, joined the Ba’athist-led National Progressive Front coalition. The other faction, led by Ali Haidar, remained in opposition until Ali Haidar himself was appointed minister for national reconciliation affairs in 2011 Syria’s. The SSNP later joined the coalition Peaceful Change Forces which, although part of opposition, is considered loyal to the regime.
Details of Termination: --
Purpose: Initially, the SSNP’s armed wing’s purpose was to confront opposition when necessary. Since the outbreak of the Syrian Civil war, they actively fight rebels.
Organisation: The militia is the armed wing of the Syrian Social Nationalist Party (SSNP). The party leadership resolutely supports the Syrian government. Many say that the positions and views of the SSNP are in harmony with the government’s goals. The party’s main leader is Assad Hardan, who directs the party from Lebanon. In Syria, the SSNP is represented by Hardan’s deputy Issamal-Mahayiri, then 96-years old, according to a news source from 2012. One of the party’s factions is in an official alliance with the ruling Syrian Bath party.
Weapons and Training: --
Size: --
Reason for Membership: Some Christians join the SSNP to fight against the radical Islamist-dominated opposition. According to one news source, the SSNP failed to pay their salaries, which implies that it had previously promised to pay its members.
Treatment of Civilians: --
Other Information: The SSNP in Syria has members of all sects, including Sunnis. The majority are Christian, Alawite and Druze elites (as in the Baath parties). The SSNP armed wing in Syria has mobilized under Popular Committee and NDF auspices, but also continued to operate independently.
References: Information was taken from news sources listed in the PGMD