Daraya residents weigh truce with regime


September 10, 2014

Water-Shortage

GOT WATER?: The local council of the West Ghouta rebel-held city of Daraya, which has been encircled and bombarded by Syrian armed forces for more than two years, remains deadlocked in talks with the regime to establish a truce.

Here, members of the local council’s Services Office distribute water to residents.

“The local council moves water from the wells that farmers dug a long time ago and distributes it to residents, seeing as water has been cut off for two years now,” Aya a-Daraniya, a Daraya resident and member of the Revolution’s Coordinators Gathering, told Syria Direct Wednesday.

Daraya faces an acute food crisis as well. To meet their nutritional needs, residents have taken to repairing agricultural land and planting zucchini, eggplant and tomatoes, while a barter system has taken the place of currency, according to an exposé published Monday by DeutscheWelle.

Aside from starvation, the regime has used barrel bombs to pressure Daraya residents to accept a truce similar to those signed in the neighboring cities of Yelda and Moadamiyeh a-Sham. “With few exceptions, destruction is the prevailing scene in the city—you often see houses which have been totally leveled,” wrote Ala al-Ahdab in his report for DeutscheWelle.

Yet in February of this year, residents took to the streets demanding that rebels hold out. In footage of the event uploaded to YouTube, one man can be seen holding a sign that reads “barrel bombs can never defeat us. Daraya against surrender.”

Asked about ongoing truce negotiations between the Daraya local council and the regime, Aya a-Daraniya was straightforward.

“Nothing was agreed upon, seeing as we demand the release of all the [regime’s] prisoners, women, children and men…what concerns us now is the good of Daraya and its residents.”

“The regime are the ones who want the truce.”

-September 10, 2014

– Photo courtesy of Daraya LCC.

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