Finally, Contact with Family in Aleppo

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Yesterday I finally got a hold of one of my cousins in Aleppo. I was trying numbers in Damascus and also Aleppo for days. Finally, they had some electricity so I was able to get through. I was told that they have not had electricity for the last two weeks and for water they only get it about every five days. The city is divided between the government held areas and the rebel held areas. He says that you can see the difference between the two when he talks to friends that are in other parts of the city.

The devastation is unbelievable and it will take years and years to rebuild the country. Today, I woke up to a message showing me that the Omayyad Mosque in Aleppo that is right outside of the covered market (souk) – the minaret was blown up. You will see the picture in the previous post.

This is an area of town that I spent so much time in and it is also the place that we would take clients that were on our tours. They loved it and took so many pictures of the area and would just sit and enjoy the peace and quiet of the place- all is gone. What else will be destroyed- I am not able to name all the places that have disappeared and also all the people and vendors that I know that are no longer around.

I am told that there are still some shops that are open and people can risk going out of their homes to get some supplies, but it will depend on what part of town that they live in. The streets are strewn with rubbish and it is becoming a public health disaster especially with the warm weather coming. Young people have established a cleaning crew and they go out in groups and try and clean up the streets and the areas around their homes and the public places and get the garbage into one big dump area and hoping that the trucks will come and pick it up and dispose of it outside of the city.

The streets are pretty quiet and most of the city is like a ghost town- very little traffic is moving around.

Not really sure how much longer that the people can keep dealing with this and there is no end in sight. The international community is not putting the pressure it needs to on the Syrian government to step down or stop the killing the innocent civilians and the destruction of its own country.

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