In Syria, the deaths of 10 people over the past two days are attributed to a snow storm. Camps sheltering Syrian refugees in nearby countries have reported more deaths from hypothermia. In Syria’s capital, the harsh weather conditions have temporarily halted fighting. CCTV’s Alaa Ebrahim reported from Damascus.
Snow storm in Syria puts temporary stop to fightingIn Syria, the deaths of 10 people over the past two days are attributed to a snow storm. Camps sheltering Syrian refugees in nearby countries have reported more deaths from hypothermia. In Syria's capital, the harsh weather conditions have temporarily halted fighting. CCTV's Alaa Ebrahim reported from Damascus.
After almost four years of violence , sanctions , and economic strife, this rare snow storm has made life even more difficult.
“We only get electricity for 12 hours a day and with no heating fuel around, keeping the house warm is impossible. This is the worst winter since the beginning of the war,” one resident of Damascus said.
The snow hampered already shaky transportation routes, sending the price of daily goods higher, but some residents managed to find a silver lining.
“It is very cold and many roads are cut off, so we got a few days off, and we are out playing with children who are quite happy not going to school. It is not easy, but at least the government subsidizes bread and other basic foods,” Najem, another one resident of Damascus, said.
On the outskirts of Damascus, soldiers remained on full alert that no one knew when the nature imposed ceasefire would end and fighting would start again, so the fighters took no chances.
At checkpoints into Damascus, government soldiers remained on guard.
“This weather is a great chance for terrorists to try and sneak a car bomb into the city , betting that soldiers are too tired or cold to carry out protocol, so we are trying to be more vigilant,” one Syrian security officer Ahmad said.
Syrian forces also used the snowfall to go on the offensive. In the mountains surrounding the capital, military units surged ahead, trying to catch their enemy off guard.
“We used the snow storm to enter terrorist areas where we planted explosive devices and set up ambushes,” a Syrian army special forces Yousef said.
But some soldiers also took the chance to swap their bullets for a snowballs, even if only briefly.