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Syria: No-Show for ‘Day of Anger’

This post is part of our special coverage Syria Protests 2011.

Speculation is rampant from international media that Syria may follow in spreading unrest from Tunisia and Egypt. Internet groups had called for Syrians to join the region-wide protests in Egypt, Yemen and Jordan, on February 4th and 5th, 2011. Today began with rumors that Syria had shut down internet, fueled by BBC and CNN reports. In answering concerned tweets from around the world, Syrians indignantly replied that their internet was fully functional. Mirar Roumeah tweeted:

internet is better than ever in #syria @syria!!! CNN is lying!!

Abdul Salam Haykal refuted numerous tweets reporting internet cutoffs:

False! @akhbaralarab: قطع الانترنت في سوريا بشكل كامل في يوم الغضب السوري http://bit.ly/ff5Ejs” #Syria cuts of Internet for day of Anger

By the end of the day, these protests had failed to materialize – but calls remain for ‘Day of Anger’ protests in February 5th.

Tweeters posted about the quietness on the streets. AbdulSalam Haykal tweeted:

Just took a drive around town. As peaceful as Friday could be. No unusual security on the streets. Yet rainy & foggy. #Syria #Damascus #fb

Dona wrote:

Just went for another walk in Damascus.Nothing.Streets are empty even Rawda caffe is almost empty.protests are only on FB #Syria #feb5

And Sate Hamza tweeted:

@yazanbadran must be causing a “Day of Rage” in the homes of the FB organizers homes. Pathetic how much the media gave them coverage #Syria

Tweets and human rights groups reported that a small vigil supporting Egypt was violently dispersed by security forces. Syria Revolution tweeted:

Peaceful demonstration happened today in Damascus #Syria dispersed violently by police in the section of Kassaa #Feb4 #Feb5.

Meer was disappointed that these events were not covered by media, which were too busy covering Egypt:

#AJEnglish and #Israeli media both covered #Egypt rallies and ignored events in #Syria. #Hama massacre #Feb5

This post is part of our special coverage Syria Protests 2011.

  • AFcrew

    I don’t think this overview of tweets from Syria gives a good picture of what must actually be going on there. If a day of protest was planned and it turned out to be a quiet day, then it would be interesting to think about why. Because the Syrians have nothing to protest about? Because they are to intimidated by the secret police? Because they are waiting till tomorrow?
    Where is all the context and the history? This time of year is particularly significant in Syrian history with the Hama massacre of 1982 that took place in the first week of February.

  • http://anasqtiesh.com Anas Qtiesh

    Hello Betsy,

    the first three twitter users you said were disappointed did not actually say that they were disappointed. They were merely relaying what they saw. I know two of them and know for a fact they were not calling for nor enthusiastic about said protests, quite the contrary.

    It’s of utmost importance that we don’t misrepresent what people said as it puts them in danger, and harms GV’s credibility.

  • http://jilliancyork.com Jillian C. York

    I’d be really surprised–shocked, actually–if some of those people were disappointed in the lack of protests. And Sate appears to be blatantly mocking the people who called for protests.

    This post seems pretty irresponsible to me.

  • http://betsyinjordan.blogspot.com Betsy Fisher

    Thanks everyone – it’s been incredibly difficult to know what’s going on on the ground in Syria. This post has been duly updated.

  • Pingback: Siria: un flop, una truffa, o deve tutto ancora succedere? « Tutto in 30 secondi

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