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Syria: Lashed for smoking, Deir ez-Zor resident recalls life under IS siege

Deir ez-Zor resident Abu Muhammad recalled the rough life conditions under the siege of self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS; formerly ISIS/ISIL), in the Hamidiya area, Tuesday, several days after the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) lifted the three-year long IS siege of the government-held enclave.

SOT, Abu Muhammad, Deir ez-Zor resident (Arabic): “We only saw how they broke into the house. They came to our house. They thumped at the door and banged. I did not open it to them first. They broke the door, went into the house, broke the freezer, broke all the things in the house. We could not sleep from fear and horror. On the second day, they flooded the whole area. There were many of them. All of them were from ISIS. We were afraid to go out. We did not dare to talk to anyone, because we did not see anyone. Only their cars drove back and forth.” *MULTIPLE SHOTS AT SOURCE*

SOT, Abu Muhammad, Deir ez-Zor resident (Arabic): “There were instructions – first, forget that you are in Syria. Forever forget. Secondly, we must go to bed early. TV is prohibited. Radio is prohibited. Mobile phones are prohibited. A woman can appear on the streets wearing such clothes that only her eyes can be seen. No smoking is allowed.” *MULTIPLE SHOTS AT SOURCE*

SOT, Abu Muhammad, Deir ez-Zor resident (Arabic): “I was in their prison for seven days. Then I had to go to the ’emir’ for trial. We went to the ’emir’. The court sentenced me to 60 lashes. I was put to the wall like this. Of course, this happened inside the prison. In prison I was advised not to cry, ‘Oh, Muhammad’. If you scream, ‘Oh, Muhammad’, they will add more. Shout, ‘Oh, Allah!'” *MULTIPLE SHOTS AT SOURCE*

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