After more than 20 days of suffering, Damascus is finally to water its thirst! Repair teams have finally made it to Al-Fejeh Spring, the main water facility that provides the capital with drinking water supply.
Finally, the 10 villages in the Wadi Barada area have reached an agreement with the Syrian Government where civilians will return to their homes at Wadi Barada, some militants will have their situation settled with the Syrian government, while others will choose be evacuated to Idleb province- Al-Qaeda stronghold in Syria. People who choose to be evacuated to Idleb are granted one chance after reaching Idleb to return to government-held areas and have their situation settled.
According to Rif Dimashq Water Authority, repair work has already started and water will be gradually back to all areas of the capital within ten days maximum. Repair teams are working around the hour to have this task achieved on time.
Almost 6 million in the capital Damascus have been suffering water shortage for more than 20 days because the main source of water for the whole city had been blocked by terrorists. The source of water in the Wadi Barada area was first polluted with diesel and sewage water and then it was land minded and bombed with cold blood depriving the capital and its inhabitants from the most basic essential of life. Right before Christmas (December) ‘rebels’ released a video where they announced that the main source of water for Damascus city under their control is being land-minded; the speaker in the video says: “This is one of the tunnels of Al-Fejeh Spring, main water source for Damascus and the rebels now are land-mining it”.
Journalist Noura Samah, writes how Wadi Barada was a successful example of coexistence for a while- even though it was held by the opposition, civilians could still go back and forth, state employees who lived there, including judges, could go back and forth from their homes in Wadi Barada to government held areas. These were the people who mediated between the opposition and the government. Food and aid also entered Wadi Barada regularly, but the opposition in the area included Nusra Front, Ahrar Al-Sham and at one point even ISIS and it held hostage the water supply for Damascus. Water was first cut in the summer of 2012, it was also cut November 20-27 2014, Aug 16-19 2015, June-7-2015, May-19-2015, July-7-2015. In general, the water supply was reduced to less hours per day, and some places only like an hour for every three days.
The UN as usual did its perfect and exact role which is never intervening to stop the crisis. They merely ‘expressed their concerns’ as usual about the sad humanitarian situation there and ‘how keen they are’ on reaching a solution. They never spoke of who actually bombed the water facilities, they just refer to it as a damage resulting from ‘the ongoing clashes’, they never force international community or security council to make ‘opposition forces’ –as they like to call terrorists- withdraw from the area and allow repair work to take place as the Syrian government has repeatedly announced its readiness to repair the facility.
Many Syrians on social media have expressed their disappointment in the repeated failure of the UN to play a role in solving the problem transparently. Zenobia Saleh writes how “Syrians, especially in Damascus, were dreaming that the UN would immediately demand terrorists to free the main water source of Wadi Barada and Al-Fejeh Spring unconditionally because it is impermissible to keep some 6 million people without water. Their dreams were squashed as even the UN blamed the water cut on ‘clashes’ “
It is significant to note that the White Helmets who have been nominated for Nobel Peace Prize and who continue to be promoted as the “Syrian civil defense’ are in fact one of the groups that signed the agreement to block water from Damascus. And here comes a question to all White Helmet fans and supporters, is this how civil defense truly works? And why are not they in Damascus helping with water distribution or maintaining hygiene in some institutions like hospitals? Why are they not taking part of aid work outside Nusra-held areas? When will you open your eyes and understand that this group is nothing but a bunch of actors and terrorists?
The same thing had happened with Aleppo before as the main sources of water remained under the control of terrorists for a long time, where 1.6 million suffered water shortage. So it is not the first time ‘opposition’ targets secure civilians to achiever political agendas. This water is not government or opposition property, it is for the people, and no one has any right to use it as an asset or pressure tool putting millions into the risk of thirst and the spread of epidemics due to lack of hygiene. Those incidents and the reaction of the international community to them is revealing clearly everyday who is truly willing to reach a solution and who is working consistently to prolong the conflict.