Assessing Control and Power Dynamics in Syria

De facto authorities and state institutions
Research paper Updated 5 February 2021 Published 13 November 2020 ISBN: 978 1 78413 427 3
Syrian citizens walk past a door that has an Assad poster on it

While the Assad regime controls vast swathes of Syria’s territory, competing de facto authorities in non-regime areas have captured the physical assets of state institutions and repurposed them to operate under rival governing structures.

Power dynamics within and between de facto authorities and the Syrian regime have allowed corrupt networks and profiteers to emerge. The country remains reliant on profiteers for the provision of basic goods and services, consequently the systematic depletion of public resources is likely to continue for the foreseeable future.

With civilian trust in governing authorities at a new low, local communities are turning to informal avenues to voice their anger.