Defiance and scepticism rule in turbulent Damascus

Stephen Starr, who has reported extensively from Syria, has spoken to people on the ground about what response they are expecting to the suspected chemical attacks.

31st August, 2013
Black columns of smoke rise from heavy shelling in the Jobar neighborhood, east of the Syrian capital Damascus. Photo: AP/Hassan Ammar

As international powers move closer to military intervention in Syria following a suspected chemical attack last month, civilians in both government and rebel-controlled parts of the country are suspicious of western military activity - unsure even if a military strike will take place at all. Part of this is due to the relentless government propaganda which is playing down the possibility of western action.

In central Damascus - a long-time government stronghold - small convoys...

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