Kurdish authorities in northeastern Syria cancel fuel price hike after deadly clashes

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Kurdish authorities in northeastern Syria on Wednesday reversed a decision to raise fuel prices following protests and clashes that left two people dead, a war monitor said.

Following a meeting, the Kurdish administration said it will rescind the price hikes – the largest to affect the region in years – “to satisfy the will of the people.”

“Old prices will be used... until a new decision is issued,” authorities said in a statement.

The Kurdish administration which controls large swathes of northeastern Syria on Monday set new prices that double and in some cases triple the cost of fuel.

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In response, hundreds of people took to the streets in the city of Qamishli and other areas, calling on the authorities to reverse the decision.

Clashes broke out on Tuesday when protesters and gunmen stormed a base in the town of Shadadi belonging to Kurdish security forces, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

One protester was killed and five others were wounded in the exchange of fire, the Britain-based monitor said.

Damascus loyalists in the city of Hassakeh – parts of which are controlled by government forces – attacked a position held by Kurdish security forces, according to the Observatory.

The Kurdish forces responded with live fire, killing one protester, the monitor said.

The Kurds control some of Syria’s largest oil and gas fields but authorities are not producing enough petrol and other refined products to meet demand.

Petrol, heating fuel and cooking gas have all been in short supply in recent months and motorists have grown used to waiting in long queues to fill up.

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