Younis al-Zahir, known as “Abu Adnan”, is the mayor of Hatlah. He is from Al-Bubadran tribes, al-Zahir family, who along with al-Raja, al-Mayouf and Al Hammadi, have have been spreading Shiism in Hatlah for decades.
He joined the Baath Party a long time ago and was appointed mayor of Hatlah after the former mayor died in 2012.
Al-Zahir previously worked with the Assad regime on several tasks, including spreading Shiism, spying on protesters, and participating in the suppression of demonstrations staged against the Assad regime in 2011, where he used his sons and nephews as spies to collect information about protesters and members of the Free Army.
After the Free Syrian Army took control of most parts of Deir Ezzor province including Hatlah town in 11 / 6 / 2013, al-Zahir denied that he and his family had converted to the Shiite faith, and when the Free Army stormed Hatlah town for the second time, no one was able to arrest anyone from al-Zahir family as they had relatives in the Free Army.
Younis al-Zahir continued to live his normal life while the Free Army was controlling the area, communicating secretly with the Assad regime and giving it information about the FSA and the area.
After Daesh took control of Hatlah and the surrounding areas, Al-Zahir immediately showed his repentance to the organization, but Daesh arrested him on charges of involvement in al-Seiyasiyah Bridge bombing as there were evidence against him. He was also accused of bringing weapons into Hatlah village during the siege, and sending food into the areas of the Assad forces control on the opposite bank of the Euphrates river, but he managed to escape and hide from the organization for a long time.
After the Assad’s forces, Russia, and the Iranian militias took control of Hatlah town in late 2017, he welcomed the forces that entered the town, and held a large feast for the officers and officials, celebrating their control over parts of the province at the expense of Daesh.
He then joined the Syrian Branch of Hezbollah militia and began carrying out his tasks, mainly spreading Shiism, and encouraging youths to join the Iranian militias.
“Al-Zahir” now works under the wing of the Iranian militias in the province, and is considered one of the influential figures in the region extending from Hatlah town to the villages of Marat, Khasham and Tabiya Jazeera. He seeks through his activities to reach high status in Tehran, and to be one of its most important men in Deir Ezzor and the region as a whole.