Essay About the Conflict in Syria

Topics: Syria, Bashar al-Assad, Israel Pages: 3 (930 words) Published: May 6, 2013
Essay about the Conflict in Syria
Foreign Affairs
April 12th, 2012.
Syria, a Middle Eastern country, is located on the east coast of the Mediterranean Sea. It is bounded by Turkey to the north, by Iraq to the east and southeast, by Jordan to the south, and by Lebanon and Israel to the southwest. Syria has an area of 185,180 square kilometers (71,500 square miles), including 1,295 square kilometers (500 square miles) of territory in the Golan Heights captured by Israel in the Six Day War of 1967. There are 2,253 kilometers (1,400 miles) of boundary length, with a coastline of 193 kilometers (120 miles). The area occupied by Syria is slightly larger than the state of North Dakota. The capital city, Damascus, is located on the Barada River in southwest Syria. Other major cities, Latakia and Aleppo, are situated on the Mediterranean coast in the west and in northern Syria, respectively. The conflict originated in Syria influenced by the wave of popular uprisings that swept much of Africa and the Middle East The unrest began in the southern city of Deraa in March when locals gathered to demand the release of 14 school children who were arrested and reportedly tortured after writing on a wall the well-known slogan of the popular uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt: "The people want the downfall of the regime." The protesters also called for democracy and greater freedom, though not President Assad's resignation. The peaceful show of dissent was, however, too much for the government and when people marched though the city after Friday prayers on 18 March, security forces opened fire, killing four people. The following day, they shot at mourners at the victims' funerals, killing another person. Within days, the unrest in Deraa had spiralled out of the control of the local authorities. In late March, the army's fourth armoured division - commanded by the president's brother, Maher - was sent in to crush the emboldened protesters. Dozens of people were killed, as tanks...
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