Waiting…

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Enab Baladi Issue # 83 – Sunday August 22, 2013

سجونPosted on Facebook: X was set free after a detention lasted for… Well! God knows for how long! Iman –29 years old- excitingly commented on that post asking about her detained husband! Iman was counting minutes and seconds, waiting for any reply, seeking eagerly any extra piece of information about her detained husband who had been absent for a year and a half. Finally, and after a long search, Iman got a telephone number, dialled it up, a man replied! Suddenly Iman got really sad after his disappointing answer! “I haven’t seen him, sister, his name sounds familiar though! I think I met someone who got to know your husband” the man said. That reply was actually a starting point of her journey search on that “one” or any link to him.

Iman is one of the hundred thousands of Syrians who are waiting for their beloved detainees to get released from the regime’s prisons. This lady, whose husband has been imprisoned for one and a half year, has no idea where he is or whether he’s alive or not. Her three daughters had been raised and grown up far away from their dad. Farah, the youngest, repeatedly asks he mother “where is my dad? Doesn’t he love us? Why should he be away that long from us?” And here the mother runs out of words amid a combination of pain, longing and tears! She couldn’t find a convincing answer for her four-year daughter nor could she for herself.

Hyam is a mother of a one-year old kid, expecting a baby to be due in three months’ time. Hyam has been waiting for her husband for two weeks now. Soldiers of that check point informed her that her husband’s case is not a big issue; it’s a matter of a few days! Nevertheless, Hyam started counting days trying to avoid her kid’s continuous questions about his dad.  Obviously, the kid kept asking “where is my dad?” since he couldn’t understand the reason beyond this shocking absence.

Umm Hisham (53 years old) has been waiting for her son’s return for a year and four months. She never lost hope though. When she heard that X has been released after two years of detention, she cried her heart out wondering more hopefully whether or not her son may be set free soon! This news has increased her optimism after a desperate long time of waiting days and nights after her aspiration had almost faded up due to the current miserable conditions of people’s lives. A huge number of people have become displaced, connections among neighbourhood areas were seized which made it impossible to get to know about the released detainees or to find out where they are!

Inside prisons, tons of detainees are dumped one on top of the other forming a heap of bodies. They have been subjected to all forms of torture day and night. This fact plus the everyday news about martyrs who have been killed under torture makes their families’ life even more miserable. Not to forget the awful life conditions those families are having due to the displacement, vagrancy and poverty. However, there has always been one thing that helped them carry on hope and optimism; it is the potential of hearing good news from a newly-released detainee. Relatives of those detainees are experiencing a combination of feelings at the same time; missing their beloved, fearing of the mysterious future and hoping that God will treat them good at the end of the day.

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