Raqqa: People remain, but life does not


In Raqqa, there are many causes of death – indiscriminate airstrikes by international coalition warplanes, daily artillery shelling by Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), and ISIS mines scattered throughout the surrounding landscape.

The deepest irony lies in the fact that this city on the bank of the bountiful Euphrates River is currently dying of thirst. 

For more than ten days, Raqqa has had no access to drinking water; over one hundred thousand people trapped in the city now must make the perilous journey to bring water home from the river. Doing so makes them vulnerable targets to coalition warplanes.

Since the beginning of the military operation to take Raqqa city from ISIS, approximately 27 civilians have been killed and dozens more have been wounded at the Euphrates. Yet people continue to travel there – despite the danger – since it is the only remaining source of clean drinking water. 

The city that was known for its great river is dying of thirst. The city that was known for its delicious cuisine is dying of hunger. For more than twenty days, no more markets or bakeries remain open in Raqqa. People remain in the city, but real life no longer exists there.

media activist from the city of Raqqa, student at the Faculty of Law at the University of the Euphrates. Director of the Media Office of Raqqa, founding member of "Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently", founding member of the documentary project of "Sound and Picture". I work in documenting violations committed by Assad's regime and ISIS group and extremist organizations inside the city of Raqqa, as I work in programming, design and visual media. I hold a certificate of coach in digital security, and a certificate of journalist coach, and a certificate in documenting violations against human rights, and a certificate in electronic advocacy. I underwent a training under the supervision of "Cyber-Arabs" in collaboration with the Institute for War and Peace "IWPR", about the management of electronic websites and leadership of advocacy campaigns, and a training of press photography under the supervision of the photojournalist "Peter Hove Olesen".