Syrian Refugees living in the edge of cold winter

Over 2.5 million displaced barefoot hungry, thirsty and unwashed Syrian refugees within the territory of the Arab Republic of Syria, are living in the school facilities which do not...
Over 2.5 million displaced barefoot hungry, thirsty and unwashed Syrian refugees within the territory of the Arab Republic of Syria, are living in the school facilities which do not have even learning conditions in rebel-controlled Syria.
It is Tuesday morning of December 18th, 2012. Heavy rain and soft wind weather was leading the terrible look of the clouded sky of the city of Marea, which is located in the northern countryside of Syria, as sub city of Aleppo province.
by Vedat Xhymshiti – Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Ehteimlet, Aleppo, Syrian Arab Republic
As sleeping in a private house of one of Syrians who abandoned his home and left to the refugees’ camps in Kilis, Turkey, I wanted to meet Basir, one of key persons for the PR of the Syrian oppositional revolutionary forces. I told him I need to go and see if there’s still any other place where displaced Syrians remained in schools as there’s been reports about the lack of places in the Turkish tents for Syrian refugees as well as many left the tents to return back home because of the weather conditions and low temperatures.

(click to see the video) Syrian Refugees living in the edge of cold winter

Basir made some contacts and told me there are some families yet in the schools of Ehteimlet (حتيملات,) village, which is located about 10/km, in air distance from the Turkish border. The only transportation to use for this day was my motorcycle, which I have been driving it around the northern countryside for more then 3 months, including the rides over the battlefields.
The rain abated for a moment, until I started riding my bike to the village in search of Syrian refugees. Well, the road was bumpy of course also filled with water.
Before entering the village of Talalin, a small truck paraded me and turn all the water in my body and the motorcycle. I could not understand why all that bustle to the Truck driver, however he has fled away even faster.
All wet arrived in village of Ehteimlet. Before we get into the center of the village, ‘Dante’ a comrade of Basir from Marea media center, was out with his motorcycle as waiting for me. He lead me to school where I began to talk to the father of 10 children as the 11th child was born just 5 days ago.
Ahmad, who was anxious to appear on the pictures of the story I was trying to tell, was living in school facilities for more than 4 months. He comes from the ‘Al Sakhur’ neighborhood of Aleppo, where fighting between rebel forces and government does not have to stop, as the bombardment by military aircraft are almost non-stop. But, he was not afraid to express the opinion that the FSA is wrong according to him.
However, he admited that this opinion has come out as fearing that the government forces are much more stronger and therefore can also be quickly re-turn the control, if so, he believes would be in serious troubles in case he (Ahmad) take side within the current uprising against country’s government, but anyway living in between the frontlines of fear and anger he had to abandon his property in Al Sakhur.
“I have no work, I am a jobless, since the conflict began. The only help I am receiving is from the families of village for food and other supply,” Ahmad told me on rainy Tuesday. “There’s no electricity, neither water supply, how can we take care of hygiene with all the children” he said. Ahmad’s children start with the 5 days youngest up to 20 years oldest child. I proudly have six boys and four daughters said Ahmad (46yrs). He told me that even FSA is sending food supply as support for him and his family. After showing me his 5 days son whose name was Amar, Ahmad told me there’s a classroom being hold lead by religious teacher Mohammad.
Teacher Mohammad Abdurrahman have 20 pupils, starting the age of 7 up to 10 years. “Yes, it is war, but as long as there’s not much conflict activity in our village why should we lose time and stay home instead teaching our children” teacher Mohammad told me. After taking som
e pictures visited another family, which was a mother with 5 children. “Since one month ago I don’t know where is he, he never came back home” told me the Syrian woman by shedding tears through her eye. I witnessed the living condition, which were terrible as living without water, electricity neither heater supply for the children. The kitchen tools could not be cleaned since weeks she said.
However, I witnessed that the traces of war are touching everywhere in Syria, even including the most innocent people who wanted to remain neutral beside the pairs involved in the conflict such as government and opposition forces. I left Ehteimlet behind with heavy rain, barefoot children, without clean food, hygienic care. No heat, no electricity and no clean water.
Anyway, I took the potholed road ahead again to return back into the abandoned house by the owner who was afraid to live in, because of the security being threatened with the life of him and his family from possible air strikes that are taken from government forces in the country.

Vedat Xhymshiti | Promote your Page too

Vedat Xhymshiti; is an independent journalist and war correspondent. He has reported on a number of Middle Eastern conflicts from the Arab Spring in 2010 to the current Syrian civil war. He has been published in various media including Der Spiegel, NY Times, TIME, Paris Match, Le Monde ect. He is specialized in International Relations and Diplomacy. Xhymshiti is also a print media critic, a columnist for the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, and founder of THEFrontliner.net

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