January 19, 2016 - Our Weekly Selection
A weekly selection of articles on Syria.
Iraqis see fake Syrian passport as golden ticket to Europe: "Iraqis are buying forged Syrian passports to try to increase their chances of winning asylum in European countries."
Without education, Syria’s children will be a lost generation: "Double-shift’ schools in Lebanon have shown it can be done. It is imperative that money is found to give all young refugees the hope that education provides."
India treads cautiously on Syria as foreign minister visits Delhi: "While Syria is not a major source of oil for India, the country has two significant investments in Syria’s petroleum sector - one is a state-owned firm to explore an oil block in nothern Syria, the other a stake in the Al Furat Petroleum Company."
Fire and Oil: The Collateral Environmental Damage of Airstrikes on ISIS Oil Facilities: "Current claims by the Russian Ministry of Defense are that they have damaged 32 oil refining complexes, 11 oil refineries, and 23 oil pumping stations, while destroying 1,080 oil tankers. When amateur observers sought out targets in one Ministry of Defense video, however, they found grain silos instead of the claimed oil storage site (perhaps in line with an effort by the Assad regime to starve out the opposition)."
Why Are Syrian Aid Workers Leaving for Europe?: "The laws of the neighboring countries these organizations are based in do not make matters easy. Even Turkey, which had long been considered more lenient than Lebanon and Jordan in its policies towards refugees, introduced new visa restrictions last week."
‘If UN positions on Syria border fall to radicals, Israel will have to respond’: "In INSS research paper, former senior officer from IDF’s Planning Directorate warns of challenges to UNDOF in North."
70,000 students out of school as ‘Russian bombardment’ prompts Idlib closures: "An announcement by the opposition Idlib Education Directorate cited “Russian bombardments” for the decision to temporarily close schools in the rebel-held province, a precautionary move set to impact “more than 70,000 students.”
‘Traders of Death’: Exploiting Starvation in Madaya: "Residents in the government-besieged town of Madaya are starving. Many have resorted to eating leaves, insects and pets to feed themselves. Some are now also accusing army officers and traders who have sneaked much-needed food past the blockade of capitalizing on the desperation of the hungry."
More than a million Syrians under siege 'at risk of starvation': "52 areas blockaded, almost all by regime troops, new figures suggest, as UN warns using food as a weapon is a 'war crime'."
Madaya’s case unprecedented in Syria war: U.N.: "The suffering in the Syrian town of Madaya is the worst seen in the country’s civil war, the United Nations said Tuesday, a day after delivering aid to the area besieged for months."
The Underground Route Out of Besieged Ghouta: "While residents in Madaya may have no way out, other areas under government siege are finding creative ways to carry on. In Eastern Ghouta, a well-known rebel-held area in rural Damascus, rebel groups are allowing residents to access their network of tunnels to escape or to get provisions."
Breaking the Siege: Q&A with The Syria Campaign: "Hundreds of thousands of people are living under siege in Syria, where starvation is being used as a weapon of war. Syria Deeply spoke with James Sadri, director of The Syria Campaign, to learn more about the prevalence of siege tactics in Syria, the perpetrators, and the charges of U.N. failure to help end the sieges."
Syrians Petition Turkey's New Visa Entry Restrictions: "Protestors campaign against new visa regulations for Syrians entering Turkey."
The most unconventional weapon in Syria: Wheat: "Strategically, bread is as important as oil or water. Civilians are dependent on the authority that distributes it, and profiteers are eager to resell it to hungry people at grotesque prices. “When you control bread and fuel,” says a Syrian analyst from Damascus who spoke on the condition of anonymity, “you control the whole society.”
Switzerland joins Denmark in seizing assets from refugees to cover costs: "Information sheet given to Syrian refugee shows seizure of assets over a limit of 1,000 Swiss francs, says Swiss news programme."
Syria’s ‘surrender or starve’ sieges prolonged for profit: "Trapped civilians ripe for exploitation by all sides in civil war."