‘The pain being suffered by trapped Ghouta residents must be felt in our hearts’

As painful seconds become minutes, minutes into hours of torture, and suddenly days followed by years; thousands of innocent lives have become the currency of a conflict with no end in sight.

Such is the dire situation in Syria, in recent days more focus on Eastern Ghouta in specific. Eastern Ghouta is a rebel-held enclave that no opposing force in the war wants to lift their hands off.

Team Bashar Al-Assad pounces frequently, backed by Russia. In response, rebels strike more ferouciosly than ever before.

The two forces continue unperturbed by the mass slaughters that take place as a result of their ‘strike and respond tactics’.

Men, women, children, all have become the unfortunate prey of one of the worst conflicts in the world.

Thousands are trapped in the enclave. More than 500 innocent civilians have died in less than a week, and that number is rising at an alarming rate with no limit in sight.

The war sees no difference between civilians and enemies apart, and they’re certainly not interested in any differentiation soon as they continue fighting.

The broader international community seems not to understand that these are human lives going through hell on Earth. We, myself included, often take this for granted since we have no blood relation to these people. Remember, someone out there is going through a tough time, battling to come to terms with the invaluable loss of their loved ones.

Take a look at the articles circulating around the world media. You’d be flabbergasted beyond imagination on reading the statistics that are the harsh realities of our innocent brothers and sisters on the other end of the world as a direct result of a deadly war that rages on without pause.

Listening to a discussion focusing on the conflict in Syria on The Forum At 8 with Sakina Kamwendo on SAfm early last year, I found myself questioning how much worse the situation can deteriorate. Sadly, a year later its a fact and not a question in a thought bubble above my head.

Despite a ‘pause’ declared by Russia, at least two civilians were killed on Tuesday (27 February 2018) during the five hour ceasefire window according to the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR).

The five hour long pause was meant to allow some 390 000 civilians to escape from the ever-increasingly dangerous town.

Almost 12% (11.9% to be exact) of children under the tender age of five are malnourished as an obvious result of food shortages.

High-profile leaders from the UN like Secretary General Antonio Guterres and Human Rights Commission Zeid Raad Al-Hussein along with other prominent figures around the world have indeed been impressive in their stances against the annihilation of peaceful people. However, these are mere words aimed at sympathizing with the victims caught in between deadly bomb strikes and have no remarkable direct role in ending the conflict.

What needs to be done is to have productive and progressive dialogues between major role-players to take decisive action towards finding and then implementing a lasting, sustainable solution.

Way too long has been the dire suffering conditions in the war-torn country.

South Africa, let’s display our caring characteristic as an example for the world to follow and become the silent, humble, peaceful leaders of the liberation of innocent people 1000s of kilometres away.

Let’s donate at least a tiny bit that won’t hurt our pockets. We’re a country blessed with innumerable NGOs which reflect our humble and kind personality as a nation, and let’s get them into action.

If that’s not within our means, then let’s scream a loud awareness about the plight of the Syrians. Let’s make #HelpSyria dominate hashtags.

We must realise the pain. Feel it in our hearts. Show some sorrow. Sympathize with the sympathy-deprived Syrians. Stand with them hand in hand, 1000s of kilometres apart.

Follow Muhammed Zahid Jadwat on Twitter: @zahidjadwat

Muhammed Zahid Jadwat
Isipingo Rail, Durban.
Follow Muhammed Zahid Jadwat on Twitter: @zahidjadwat

Mettle Administrative Services

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