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Syrian refugees in France abide by quarantine, better than Assad siege, they say

Syrian Refugees | 2020-03-25 21:57:03
Syrian refugees in France abide by quarantine, better than Assad siege, they say
  (Zaman Al Wasl)- Most of Syrian refugees in France are satisfied with the government measures to stem human movement to combat the spread of the Coronavirus, which has killed more than 1330 people in the country of 67 million.

But the quarantine has awakened the bitter memories of siege in Syria and days of being detained in the prisons of the Syrian regime. These days in quarantine have imposed a way of life that is closer to a death-like pause than it is to liveliness and a new routine of isolation that the Syrians accepted as they continued to stay in their homes and abide by the instructions of the French authorities.

Mohamedd Obaid, 26, says: “I was arrested by the Military Security Division for 15 days. I witnessed all kinds of torture during this period, which makes the quarantine in France, compared to my experience of arrest in Syria, a period of rest and recuperation. What matters is that my family and I feel safe despite the spread of the virus, as this country is highly concerned with human health and human rights in general.” 

Nearly 453,000 people have now been confirmed with the coronavirus globally, and while at least 113,000 people have recovered from COVID-19, more than 20,520 have died, according to data from Johns Hopkins University in the US.

France has a confirmed case count of more than 22,600, the fourth highest in Europe. 

If Obaid's family had stayed until this time in Jordan, the first refuge destination, the economically weak country, the situation would have been more hazardous.
 Obaid hopes that scientists will soon find a vaccine that saves mankind from the Coronavirus. At the same time, I hope that the war in Syria will. 

The Paris-based refugee, Maram Ahmed, pseudonym, considers that the quarantine has increased her suffering and her disputes with her husband. His continuous, 24 hour- presence has become, as she puts it “unbearable”.

  Rasha Hassan, 35, spends her time with her children between cleaning, cooking and fighting with my husband, whose continuous presence in the house has become intolerable, especially since he came from Syria about 6 months ago, and still hasn't adjusted to life here in France, and I think that if the situation continues as it is, we will end up divorcing each other as soon as the quarantine is lifted.”

"Despite everything, I am thankful that I am living this domestic quarantine here in France, for we are safe in our homes as long as we adhere to the instructions. In Syria, however, if we had been lucky enough to survive death from under Assad’s shells, death will, absolutely, reach us either from the cold in the camps or from fear of the disease, and if not, then we would definitely be dead from the actual virus".

Hassan says the Assad regime is still insisting on its willingness to stop the virus spread in the country, but we are well acquainted with the system’s lies and we’ve all heard about those who die in the hospitals of Damascus, Lattakia and Tartous, under the pretext of acute pneumonia or hypotension.

Maram hoped that the period of quarantine would not last long and that all people would live a peaceful virus-free life, and that we would get rid of all tyrants and criminals such as Bashar al-Assad, Putin and the ruler of Iran.
For his part, Farid Al-Hajjar, a Syrian refugee who comes from Lebanon and is settled in western France says to Zaman Al-Wasl: “I work in the food trade, but now I am out of work. I try to use my time learning the language and amusing my children, but despite that I suffer from a deadly boredom.". And then he added, “We Syrians have been living a similar situation that the world is living because of the virus, nine years ago; we have preceded the world in quarantine. Our freedom was confiscated, we were forced into our homes, and we knocked on the pots for salvation. Fear and terror did not leave our homes, but not because of this virus, but because of a corrupted system that killed more than half a million Syrians".

"At that time, we were using the muzzle to protect ourselves from the chemicals that come from al-Assad’s weapons," he added. “The international community’s decisions did not protect us from Al Assad’s corona in the way sterilization protects the hands from the Corona virus.”

Al-Hajjar goes on to say, "There is a single difference between the fear that the Syrians have been, and still are experiencing for ten consecutive years, and the fear that the fear that the world is possessed with from the Coronavirus now, is that all people sympathized with each other against the virus, while we were and are still facing tyranny alone, dying under the regime's weapons without having the sympathy from the countries and peoples of the world. We were dying silently despite the roar of our cries that echoed across the globe. However, despite this, we are still standing and insisting to carry on with our revolution, and we will stand with the French families in this ordeal so that we can overcome it together, as we have already developed the necessary endurance and patience for epidemics and aches. "

Al-Hajjar talks once more about his situation of domestic quarantine saying: “I fear for the rest of my family that lives in Syria more than for my family and my children here in France.” He attributes his fear to the poor technical and health services provided for the Syrian population, as well as to the power outages, loss of essential materials in the market, and if they are available, to their ridiculously high prices.

  The eight-year-old war has claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands and forced 13 million people from their homes, half of whom have left their shattered homeland.
Zaman A Wasl
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