Syria

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Syria

Post  laraschembrisant on Mon Apr 28, 2014 4:34 pm

The violence in Syria began in March 2011. The middle eastern country has been crippled by a brutal civil war. Since then, the United Nations estimates more than 100,000 people have died in the clashes between President Bashar al-Assad's government and rebel forces who want him out. The UN also says more than two million people have fled Syria to neighboring countries, and over half of those refugees are children. In July 2012, the International Red Cross said the violence in Syria had become so widespread that it was in a state of civil war. The trouble began in 2011 in the Syrian city of Deraa. Locals took to the streets to protest after 15 schoolchildren had been arrested - and reportedly tortured - for writing anti-government graffiti on a wall. The protests were peaceful to begin with, calling for the kids' release, democracy and greater freedom for people in the country. The government responded angrily, and on 18 March 2011, the army opened fire on protesters, killing four people. The following day, they shot at mourners at the victims' funerals, killing another person. People were shocked and angry at what had happened and soon the unrest had spread to other parts of the country. At first the protesters just wanted democracy and greater freedom. But once government forces opened fire on peaceful demonstrations, people demanded that the President, Bashar al-Assad, resign. President Assad refused to step down. As the violence worsened he offered to change some things about the way the country is run, but the protesters didn't believe him. President Assad also has quite a lot of people in Syria that still support him and his government. There isn't a clear single group of rebels, united against President Assad. The opposition, who all want the president to step down, is split between groups of rebel fighters, political parties and people living in exile, who cannot return to the country. The Free Syrian Army is the largest group fighting military battles against the government. It's far smaller than the government's army; it's poorly equipped and most of its fighters have only had basic training. There are many smaller military groups all fighting against the government, but they are not under the control of the Free Syrian Army and some of them hold extreme views against western countries. Other opposition groups try to distance themselves from the violence. Instead they claim to offer an alternative to the current government and propose a peaceful political solution to the crisis. There has been increasing pressure on the international community to act after it emerged that chemical weapons are being used in the war.

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Re: Syria

Post  laraschembrisant on Mon Apr 28, 2014 4:36 pm


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