Syrian Druze community rallies against President Assad’s regime

The Syrian city of Suweida witnessed a mass rally where around 2,000 protesters, mainly from the Druze community, expressed their anger at President Bashar al-Assad’s regime. The demonstration stemmed from the removal of fuel subsidies, which led to further economic difficulties in the already crisis-ridden region. While the government-controlled city has largely been spared from the worst consequences of the civil war, it is not immune to the nation’s severe economic crisis. Chanting anti-government slogans and tearing down a portrait of President Assad in a city square, the protesters expressed their discontent with the regime. Despite the absence of immediate aggressive action by the authorities, the government has a history of brutally cracking down on political opponents. Although the demonstrations are yet to spread to other government-held areas, activists report that the protests are gaining momentum. This rare show of dissent within the government-controlled region highlights the intensifying economic hardship faced by the Syrian people, further deteriorating the already fragile situation in the country.