Magazine

Oct 26, 2018

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting

Some people in the Syrian capital Damascus have been able to enjoy a semblance of normality since fighting in the area ended in May, but in the rubble of shattered, destitute towns nearby, life could not be more different.

Central Damascus was held by the government throughout the war and suffered much less damage than opposition-held areas - evidence of the huge gulf in fire power between the two sides.

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
1

A man walks past a banner depicting Syrian president Bashar al-Assad in Douma, outside Damascus, Syria, September 17, 2018. The town of Douma in eastern Ghouta was retaken by the government from rebels in April after heavy fighting and intense army bombardment and air strikes. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
2

Kamal Shtewi, a resident of al-Khalidiya neighbourhood, poses for a photograph in front of destroyed buildings in al-Khalidiya area, in the government-controlled part of Homs, Syria, September 18, 2018. In the al-Khalidiya district of Homs, retaken by the government in 2013, after heavy army bombardment and air strikes, the slow nature of recovery is clear. Much of the neighbourhood is a ghost town, uninhabited and closed by the army. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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Pictures of Syrian president Bashar al-Assad and his father Hafez al-Assad are seen inside a hotel in Damascus, Syria, September 16, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
4

People travel in a bus after arriving to recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 12, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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A taxi driver waits for customers in the Old City of Damascus, Syria, September 17, 2018. For much of the war the eastern Ghouta rebels fired mortars into Damascus, including the Old City, where shrapnel marks are often visible scored into streets or walls. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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Destroyed buildings are seen from of a train traveling back from recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 12, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
7

Russian soldiers pray inside the Umayyad mosque in Damascus, Syria, September 14, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
8

Syrian flag flutters at a military check point in al-Khalidiya area, in the government-controlled part of Homs, Syria, September 18, 2018. In the al-Khalidiya district of Homs, retaken by the government in 2013, after heavy army bombardment and air strikes, the slow nature of recovery is clear. Much of the neighbourhood is a ghost town, uninhabited and closed by the army. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
9

Destroyed buildings are seen in al-Khalidiya area in the government-controlled part of Homs, Syria, September 18, 2018. In the al-Khalidiya district of Homs, retaken by the government in 2013, after heavy army bombardment and air strikes, the slow nature of recovery is clear. Much of the neighbourhood is a ghost town, uninhabited and closed by the army. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
10

A soldier guards a train at a station near recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 12, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
11

Dana, 24, a bartender, pours a drink inside a bar in the Old City of Damascus, Syria, September 13, 2018. "During the war, when bombs were falling, it could be days without customers, but we never stopped working," Dana said. For much of the war the eastern Ghouta rebels fired mortars into Damascus, including the Old City, where shrapnel marks are often visible scored into streets or walls. Cafes spill out onto the cobbled streets of the Old City at night as carefully coiffed barbers give fashionable haircuts to young men, and groups of friends gather to play guitars. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
12

People walk through the Old City of Damascus, Syria, September 13, 2018. For much of the war the eastern Ghouta rebels fired mortars into Damascus, including the Old City, where shrapnel marks are often visible scored into streets or walls. Cafes spill out onto the cobbled streets of the Old City at night as carefully coiffed barbers give fashionable haircuts to young men, and groups of friends gather to play guitars. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
13

A man takes a rest while waiting for customers at luna park at recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 12, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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Rasha, 30, the owner of Esco Bar, poses for a photograph in the Old City of Damascus, Syria, September 13, 2018. "I like my job. I like bars and night life here. But in the end I would like to move out of Syria. I don't see a future here," said Rasha. For much of the war the eastern Ghouta rebels fired mortars into Damascus, including the Old City, where shrapnel marks are often visible scored into streets or walls. Cafes spill out onto the cobbled streets of the Old City at night as carefully coiffed barbers give fashionable haircuts to young men, and groups of friends gather to play guitars. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
15

Christian couple Ruba and Antoun, both 31, hug each-other during their wedding outside Damascus, Syria, September 14, 2018. Ruba works for UN and Antoun is a veterinarian. The couple are planning to stay and continue working in Syria unless they get a good opportunity to work abroad. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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Antoun is carried by his friends during his wedding to marry Ruba outside Damascus, Syria, September 14, 2018. Antoun is a veterinarian and Ruba works for UN. The couple are planning to stay and continue working in Syria unless they get a good opportunity to work abroad. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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The band Kibreet play at a Christian couple Ruba's and Antoun's wedding outside Damascus, Syria, September 15, 2018. Ruba works for UN and Antoun is a veterinarian. The couple are planning to stay and continue working in Syria unless they get a good opportunity to work abroad. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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Children play at luna park at recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 12, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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People sing in a train as they travel through the outskirts of Damascus towards recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 12, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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A soldier watches a train traveling through the outskirts of Damascus towards recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 15, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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Children are seen from a train traveling through the outskirts of Damascus towards recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 15, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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A damaged cemetery is seen from a train traveling through the outskirts of Damascus towards recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 15, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
23

A woman looks out of a window from of a train traveling through the outskirts of Damascus towards recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 15, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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A destroyed carriage is seen from a train traveling through the outskirts of Damascus towards recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 15, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
25

A child pushes a cart selling cooked sweetcorn in Douma, outside Damascus, Syria, September 17, 2018. The town of Douma in eastern Ghouta was retaken by the government from rebels in April after heavy fighting and intense army bombardment and air strikes. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
26

People celebrate friend's birthday in Marionette bar in the Old City of Damascus, Syria, September 13, 2018. For much of the war the eastern Ghouta rebels fired mortars into Damascus, including the Old City, where shrapnel marks are often visible scored into streets or walls. Cafes spill out onto the cobbled streets of the Old City at night as carefully coiffed barbers give fashionable haircuts to young men, and groups of friends gather to play guitars. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
27

People sing in a train as they travel through the outskirts of Damascus towards recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 12, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
28

Women wait to be examined in a hospital in Douma, outside Damascus, Syria, September 17, 2018. The town of Douma in eastern Ghouta was retaken by the government from rebels in April after heavy fighting and intense army bombardment and air strikes. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
29

A man throws out debris from an apartment building in Douma, outside Damascus, Syria, September 17, 2018. The town of Douma in eastern Ghouta was retaken by the government from rebels in April after heavy fighting and intense army bombardment and air strikes. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
30

A woman walks past destroyed buildings in the government-controlled part of Homs, Syria, September 18, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
31

Two women talk to each other in a bar in the Old City of Damascus, Syria, September 13, 2018. For much of the war the eastern Ghouta rebels fired mortars into Damascus, including the Old City, where shrapnel marks are often visible scored into streets or walls. Cafes spill out onto the cobbled streets of the Old City at night as carefully coiffed barbers give fashionable haircuts to young men, and groups of friends gather to play guitars. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
32

A woman looks out of a window of a train traveling through the outskirts of Damascus towards recently opened international fair in Damascus, Syria, September 12, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
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People walk in front of the Umayyad mosque in Damascus, Syria, September 14, 2018. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
34

A man sits on a motorcycle at the entrance of a hospital in Douma, outside Damascus, Syria, September 17, 2018. The town of Douma in eastern Ghouta was retaken by the government from rebels in April after heavy fighting and intense army bombardment and air strikes. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
35

A man talks to a costumer as he stands inside his barber shop in the Old City of Damascus, Syria, September 13, 2018. For much of the war the eastern Ghouta rebels fired mortars into Damascus, including the Old City, where shrapnel marks are often visible scored into streets or walls. Cafes spill out onto the cobbled streets of the Old City at night as carefully coiffed barbers give fashionable haircuts to young men, and groups of friends gather to play guitars. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
36

A man lies inside a hospital in Douma, outside Damascus, Syria, September 17, 2018. The town of Douma in eastern Ghouta was retaken by the government from rebels in April after heavy fighting and intense army bombardment and air strikes. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

Normality returns to some in Damascus after fighting
37

Children play soccer in al-Khalidiya area, in the government-controlled part of Homs, Syria, September 18, 2018. In the al-Khalidiya district of Homs, retaken by the government in 2013, after heavy army bombardment and air strikes, the slow nature of recovery is clear. Much of the neighbourhood is a ghost town, uninhabited and closed by the army. MARKO DJURICA/REUTERS

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