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Friday, February 26, 2021

Having Received Syria’s Warfare, al-Assad Is Mired in Financial Woes

Most Syrians now commit their days to discovering gasoline to cook dinner and heat their houses, and standing in lengthy traces for rationed pita. Energy shortages are fixed, with some areas getting only some hours of electrical energy a day, barely sufficient for individuals to maintain their cellphones charged.

Determined girls have taken to promoting their hair to feed their households.

“I needed to promote my hair or my physique,” a mom of three mentioned not too long ago in a hair salon close to Damascus, talking on situation of anonymity, like others interviewed for this text, for concern of arrest.

Her husband, a carpenter, was unwell and solely sporadically employed, she mentioned, and he or she wanted heating oil for the home and winter coats for her kids.

With the $55 she received for her hair, which will probably be used to make wigs, she purchased two gallons of heating oil, garments for her kids and a roast hen, the primary her household had tasted in three months.

She cried from disgrace for 2 days afterward.

The falling foreign money implies that medical doctors now earn the equal of lower than $50 a month. The top of the medical doctors’ syndicate mentioned not too long ago that many have been going overseas for work, to Sudan and Somalia, among the many uncommon nations that permit simple entry for Syrians however neither of which has a robust economic system. Different professionals earn a lot much less.

“Folks’s concern, greater than the rest, is meals and gasoline,” mentioned a Damascus musician. “All the pieces is abnormally costly and persons are terrified to open their mouths.”

The causes are a number of and overlapping: widespread injury and displacement from the warfare; sweeping Western sanctions on Mr. al-Assad’s authorities and associates; a banking collapse in neighboring Lebanon, the place rich Syrians stored their cash; and lockdowns to fight the coronavirus.

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