Tiger Forces

Tiger Forces
Qawat Al-Nimr (فوات النمر)

Syrian Special Forces Patch
Active 2013–present
Allegiance Syria Syrian Arab Republic
Branch Syrian Army
Type Light infantry
Role Offensive operations
Size Division
Maj. Gen. Suheil al-Hassan

Tiger Forces or Qawat Al-Nimr (Arabic: قوات النمر) is a special forces unit of the Syrian Arab Army which functions primarily as an offensive unit in the Syrian Civil War. It has been described as a "hot commodity for any government offensive", but their relatively small numbers make it difficult to deploy them to multiple fronts at once.[1]

After successful operations in Latakia and Hama, Colonel Suheil al-Hassan was tasked a special project by the Syrian Armed Forces Central Command in the fall of 2013—to train and lead a Special Forces unit that would work primarily as an offensive unit. Colonel Hassan handpicked many of the soldiers that would later form the Tiger Forces.[2] On 25 December 2015, Suheil al-Hassan was promoted to major general after refusing to be brigadier general last year.[3] He played a key role in commanding Syrian troops during 2016 Aleppo campaign. Tiger Forces were tasked two times to cut the key supply lines to rebel-held Aleppo.

The division is one of few in the Syrian Army to deploy T-90 tanks, another being the 4th Mechanized Division.[4][5]


The Tiger Forces have multiple special operations brigades:

Cheetah Forces[6] or Qawat al-Fahoud (قوات الفهود)[7] — The current commander is Colonel Shadi Isma’el and the deputy commander is Colonel Lu’ayy Sleitan.[6] Subunits of the Cheetah Forces include Team 3 and Team 6. Team 6 were the first soldiers that ended the 35-month long Siege of Kuweires Military Airbase,[8][9] while Team 3 along with Suqur al-Sahara completed the East Aleppo ISIS encirclement.[10]

Panther Forces[11] — The current commander is Colonel Ali Shaheen.[12] They were involved in the Palmyra offensive (March 2016), where they were redeployed to another front after it was over.[11][12]

See also


  1. Leith Fadel (10 November 2015). "Exclusive: Tiger Forces to Redeploy to Northern Hama". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 12 February 2016.
  2. Leith Fadel (26 February 2015). "Who is Colonel Suheil al-Hassan of the Tiger Forces?". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 12 February 2016.
  3. Leith Fadel (15 December 2015). "Prominent Tiger Forces Commander Promoted to Major General". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 5 June 2016.
  4. Leith Fadel (28 May 2016). "Tiger Forces mobilize T-90 tanks for upcoming Aleppo offensive". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 7 June 2016.
  5. Leith Fadel (23 January 2016). "Convoy of Russian T-90 tanks arrive in southern Aleppo". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 8 June 2016.
  6. 1 2 Leith Fadel (19 October 2015). "Cheetah Forces Capture 30km of Territory from ISIS in East Aleppo: Kuweires Airport Within Sight". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 18 February 2016.
  7. https://www.files.ethz.ch/isn/194054/379_Bodansky.pdf
  8. Chris Tomson (11 November 2015). "Syrian Army and Hezbollah Advance in Southern and Eastern Aleppo – Latest Map Update". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 18 February 2016.
  9. Leith Fadel (10 November 2015). "Cheetah Forces Lift the Three Year Long Siege of the Kuweires Military Airbase". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 18 February 2016.
  10. Leith Fadel (20 February 2016). "Tiger Forces complete the east Aleppo encirclement: 800+ ISIS fighters trapped". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 20 February 2016.
  11. 1 2 Leith Fadel (5 March 2016). "Russian Air Force hammers ISIS' oil routes in east Homs as the Syrian Army advances on Palmyra". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 6 June 2016.
  12. 1 2 Leith Fadel (18 April 2016). "Syrian Army cancels the Palmyra-Deir Ezzor offensive". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 6 June 2016.

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