These young blokes are true heroes. I hope they survive and thrive in a democratic Syria. A single spark can start a prairie fire!
(Photo of them in 2011, after arrest and torture)
“Your turn, Doctor.” Seven years after scribbling the anti-Assad slogan that sparked Syria’s war, activists-turned-rebels Moawiya and Samer Sayasina are bracing for a regime assault on their hometown of Daraa.
They were just 15 when they and friends, inspired by the Arab Spring revolutions they saw on television, daubed a groundbreaking message on one of the southern city’s walls in the spring of 2011.
“We’d been following the protests in Egypt and Tunisia, and we saw them writing slogans on their walls like ‘Freedom’ and ‘Down with the regime’,” said Moawiya, now 23.
“We got a can of spray paint and we wrote ‘Freedom. Down with the regime. Your turn, Doctor’,” referring to President Bashar al-Assad, a trained ophthalmologist.
Within two days, security forces stormed their homes and detained the boys, who are unrelated but share a common family name.
“They tortured us to find out who had provoked us to write it,” Moawiya said.
The teenagers’ detention prompted a wave of angry protests demanding their release, in what many point to as the spark to Syria’s nationwide uprising.”
The rest of the report can be read here.
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