Tens of thousands of people rallied for the fourth straight Friday across Idlib Province in northwest Syria, chanting for the Syrian Revolution and against any renewed threat of a Russia-regime offensive.
Rallies were organized around the theme, “Neither Reconstruction nor Constitution Before Assad is Ousted”. Gatherings were reported in cities and towns, including Idlib, Dana, Khan Sheikhoun, Ma’arat al-Numan, Ariha, Taftanaz, Kafranbel, and Jisr al-Shughour.
The Assad regime is appealing for reconstruction funds to repair damage — estimated at more than $380 billion during the 90-month conflict — including in areas reoccupied by pro-Assad regimes since 2016. The UN envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, is chairing discussions for a constitutional committee, but opponents say it will do nothing for an effective political transition.
#Syria: the masses of #Idlib fill the highway outside of Maarat al-Numan to protest against the #Assad regime and the carnage it unleashed on the people of the region for the last 7 years. pic.twitter.com/lL7wst2dP6
— Thomas van Linge (@ThomasVLinge) September 21, 2018
The rallies were renewed at the end of August, as Russia and the regime bombed and shelled, killing scores of people, and threatened a ground assault on Idlib and northern Hama Provinces.
The offensive was checked by the opposition of Turkey, which has had forces in the area alongside rebels since summer 2016. Almost two weeks ago, Turkey and Russia agreed a de-militarized zone between the opposition- and regime-held areas, suspending any Russian-regime assault.
Free Idlib Police among a rally: