British Prime Minister David Cameron, in DC to meet with President Barack Obama, told reporters today that Syria’s history was being written in the blood of her people — and that it’s happening on our watch.
It’s hard to argue with the figures — as many as 80,000 people have been killed over 2 years of conflict, the BBC reports.
There’s perhaps no more visceral sign of this destruction than the image at the top of this article from Syrian photographers Lens Young Homsi (which has been authenticated by the Associated Press).
This image is from today, May 13 2013, and shows the level of devastation in the city of Homs. As Max Fisher of the Washington Post notes, it shows a city in “total ruin”.
Here’s another image from today, featuring a destroyed tank:
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen devastation in the city of Homs, which is now largely in control of the Syrian army after a long and bloody siege.
The city, near the highway that links the capital Damascus with Jordan, has seen extensive shelling and bombing during the Syrian conflict. It was also the city where American journalist Marie Colvin and French photographer Remy Ochelik died in 2012.
Lens Young Homsi, a group of photographers based in the city, have been documenting the devastation. According to Global Voices, the group is all volunteers and have no formal training, but the photos they have produced are startling.
Here’s one image from March 6, 2013:
And here’s another from November 29, 2012.
Homs was a major city in Syria, the third largest in Syria and an important industrial hub. It was one of the first cities to join the anti-Assad Syrian rebels, and after more than 300 days besieged parts look virtually unrecognizable to what it once was.
Images from 2011, taken at the beginning of anti-Assad protests in the city’s centre, Quwatli Street, look like a completely different city:
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