Towards Collapse? The Daraa Province in southwest Syria

sculpture of assad

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]On May 16th escalation reached new heights when a government security patrol attempted to arrest locals from the town of Al-Sanamayn, 30 km (18 miles) from the border with Israel. The locals, who were former Syrian Free Army leaders, retaliated and a fight broke out.  Two soldiers were shot and killed by the armed locals.  Since the incident, the town has been under siege and civilians are not allowed to enter or leave it.

It seems that the situation in the Daraa Province keeps getting worse. Signs of dissatisfaction with the Government were seen when the Assad government attempted, as their first act of “reconstruction” in Daraa, to rebuild the statue of his late father. Its collapse symbolized the beginning of the war and its reconstruction proclaimed the victory of Assad. Moreover, the civilians of Daraa viewed this act as utter neglect of the local population, placing more effort on symbolizing the victory rather than the immediate necessities of the people after almost an entire decade of war.

This attitude by the government has turned civilians towards rebelling against the government. It started with “Down to Assad” graffiti on walls in Daraa, while former Syrian opposition members were being targeted and killed one by one – despite their agreement to reconciliate with the government. There are also reports of the death of dozens of locals from the Daraa province during interrogations in government prisons.

Assad’s lack of attention to the grievances of his citizens is increasing instability in the province where the Syrian Civil war started. Grievances and lack of care for the periphery, was one of the leading causes of the uprising. If the grievances remain unattended, the current situation in Al-Sanamayn might only be the first sign of the future.

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Ibrahim Abu Ahmad

Ibrahim Abu Ahmad

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