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In images: Six years of the Syrian war

Nazeer al-Khatib, AFP | Residents return to a destroyed al-Bab on March 7, 2017, after it was captured by Turkish troops and Syrian opposition fighters.

On March 15, 2011, protesters took to the streets in “a day of rage” demonstrations against the Syrian regime. Six years and more than 300,000 deaths later, Bashar al-Assad is still in power and the country is in ruins.


Exactly six years ago, Syrians staged peaceful protests in Deraa, Damascus and Aleppo, demanding civil liberties and freedom for political prisoners. The “day of rage” demonstrations mirrored those in Tunisia, Libya and Egypt.

But the outcome was to prove arguably more devastating than in the other countries that experienced the so-called Arab Spring. It would also draw in regional players as well as global superpowers supporting opposing sides, a development that has complicated international efforts to bring an end to the war.

The conflict also pit Sunnis against Shiites, saw the rise of the Islamic State (IS) group, drew foreign fighters from across the globe and changed the geopolitics in a combustible region.

FRANCE 24 looks back on six brutal years in Syria.

Syria: Six years of a brutal war
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