I’m  “N. H” from Eastern Ghouta and a resident of Ayn Tarma

I’m  “N. H” from Eastern Ghouta and a resident of Ayn Tarma. I am currently living outside Syria and working on following my studies. Before 2010, my daily routine was just school and home. At the beginning of the Syrian revolution and the shelling on my town, I was forced to evacuate to Jobar. As the situation got worse, I moved to Alnabk and then to Lebanon, seeking refuge from the horror we experienced since 2011 due to shelling, explosions, and sometimes fleeing to mosques in search of a safe place from the bombardment.

We were displaced because of the Syrian regime’s army and security forces, which brutally suppressed protesters, resulting in a large number of martyrs in every region, in addition to inhumane behaviors at regime checkpoints, including the use of snipers.

The most significant event that completely changed my life was the night of August 21, 2013. I was seven months pregnant, and seven families lived in one house. The situation inside the house was chaotic, and personally, I was mentally exhausted due to news of shelling and death.

We never imagined there was a weapon called Sarin gas. On the massacre day, I woke up at 8:00 in the morning to the loud sound of the news on TV. I went to the TV room, and the first thing I saw was a picture of my older brother on screen, lying motionless. Then, I saw a man carrying my younger brother’s son, who was only a few months old.

At that moment, I felt very bad. I tried to call Syria, but no one answered. Even my husband didn’t answer as he was at work. After about half an hour, my husband arrived and told me that my second brother had called and told him what had happened. He conveyed that my entire family who were in the same place had been martyred after a Sarin gas missile dropped on the building they lived in, and another missile fell on the building of my other relatives.

I learned that my mother, father, siblings, their spouses, and children had all been martyred due to chemical weapons and were picked up to the town of Hamouriyah to bury them there. After two days, I found out that my younger sister and brother were alive after they were considered missing. However, the rest had all been martyred.

From my family, ten children, fifteen women, and several men, including my father, brother, and uncle, and three of my aunt’s sons were martyred. I currently remember seven of them, but the actual number was much higher.

My brother told me that the shelling attack was at night when everyone was asleep. When they reached my family’s house, they found them trying to leave, but they ran out of time. They found my father on the stairs of the house, and my brother’s wife had fallen over the stairs, holding her two daughters. My surviving sister was in the basement and currently suffers partial memory loss. My brother had managed to reach the street right in front of the house.

I hold the Syrian regime, headed by Bashar al-Assad, entirely responsible because the area that was bombed was populated with civilians, children, and civilians yet they were targeted.


This post is also available in: العربية Français