Mosul Residents Express Solidarity With Syrian Civilians
For many people living in the eastern side of the war-torn Iraqi city of Mosul, Tuesday's (April 4) chemical attack near the Syrian city of Idlib served as a reminder of the hardships felt by Syrian civilians living through six years of civil war.
As eastern Mosul struggles to recover from the U.S.-backed offensive that cleared its side of the city from the Islamic State (ISIS) group in January, some residents drew similarities between their experiences and that of their Syrian neighbors on Friday (April 7).
Fathy Salim said Iraqi and Syrian civilians have no institutions to defend them.
Another Om Raed said the residents of Mosul were crying over Syria’s dead children.
"They [the Syrians] have no more children. The children are all dead. We are devastated over them. Would Allah and Mohammad accept this? Why is Bashar striking them [Syrian civilians] with chemical weapons. Breaking their mother's hearts over [the children]. I swear we are crying over the children,” Raed said.
In addition to the residents denouncing the chemical attack, some also protested the lack of services such as water and electricity since Iraqi forces retook the eastern half of the city.
"We have not seen any services. We have not received any services,” Mohamed Waleed, a residents of the city told Reuters. “Officials have not visited us. We have not seen one official here. We haven't seen anyone come here to ask us what we need. There is no water, no electricity. The struggle is extraordinary and public services are destroyed."
Even though the fighting has passed, east Mosul residents are never too far from the daily violence that engulfs the western side of the city.
Iraqi troops are trying to dislodge IS from Mosul's Old City, where the jihadists are resisting with car bombs, snipers and mortar fire.