THE STORIES BEHIND THE HEADLINES

Abu Dhabi

London

New York

Wed, 20 Nov 2019 12:08 GMT

Souq Al- Sakatieh in Aleppo Re-born Again with New Hopes and Wishes for Better Future

Politics

Marah Sharba

Sun, 03 Nov 2019 19:46 GMT

Today Syrians are getting themselves ready to step forward and get things back together after the crisis. Aleppo, the Syrian city which used to be the main industrial city, of which large parts were damaged in the civil war, is coming back to life.

Al -Sakatieh market significance

The Al Sakatieh Souq in Aleppo city is one of the main and most beautiful tourist attractions. It is among the oldest covered markets in the world and more than 1100 years old and therefore valuable heritage.

Recently, it was reopened after having been shut down since 2012, due to the war. This souq is one of the most important and big trade covered centres in Aleppo. This traditional market was in the past the core main link between the ancient Aleppo markets, from the Antakia Door in the west side of ancient Aleppo to Al Zarb Souq that confronts Aleppo Castle from the east side.

It used to have everything you need and was famous for its food and meat shops, oils, clothes and textiles, herb soaps and other products made by Aleppo craftsmen throughout history.

Most importantly, at the same time the professions that were found in the market are part of the cultural heritage and were passed on from grandparents to their sons and grandchildren, which shows the Syrian original essence and long tradition. The souq was recently re-opened after requalifying and restoration.

A Flashback to the Souq before the crisis and the re-birth of the market being the re-birth of shop owners

"We had been in this market for 50 years, it was the most beautiful scene and had everything you need; clothes, meat, nuts, vegetables and everything you could ask for. We were neighbours and we loved each other, all of us were family." Kadour said, who is a meat seller with a longing smile and a bit of bitterness sense when asked about the souq in the past. After reopening the souq, he is sitting next to his shop with his little grandchild.

He continues, “Babies are born small, it takes them time to grow up. Today, this market is like a new baby and with time it will grow up and take steps and flourish again.”

Marwan, a nut seller, who had been in the souq since 1967 says,

“We were getting along very well and thankful for God, we were like a family and happy. After the crisis, everything changed.” And when asked about how he felt about reopening the souq he comments, “We felt like starting a new life, the crisis took time and now it is a new start for us. We are re-born. I feel like I am re-born now and I am starting from the very beginning.”

Today Syrians are getting themselves ready to step forward and get things back together after the crisis. Aleppo, the Syrian city which used to be the main industrial city, of which large parts were damaged in the civil war, is coming back to life.

Al -Sakatieh market significance

The Al Sakatieh Souq in Aleppo city is one of the main and most beautiful tourist attractions. It is among the oldest covered markets in the world and more than 1100 years old and therefore valuable heritage.

Recently, it was reopened after having been shut down since 2012, due to the war. This souq is one of the most important and big trade covered centres in Aleppo. This traditional market was in the past the core main link between the ancient Aleppo markets, from the Antakia Door in the west side of ancient Aleppo to Al Zarb Souq that confronts Aleppo Castle from the east side.

It used to have everything you need and was famous for its food and meat shops, oils, clothes and textiles, herb soaps and other products made by Aleppo craftsmen throughout history.

Most importantly, at the same time the professions that were found in the market are part of the cultural heritage and were passed on from grandparents to their sons and grandchildren, which shows the Syrian original essence and long tradition. The souq was recently re-opened after requalifying and restoration.

A Flashback to the Souq before the crisis and the re-birth of the market being the re-birth of shop owners

"We had been in this market for 50 years, it was the most beautiful scene and had everything you need; clothes, meat, nuts, vegetables and everything you could ask for. We were neighbours and we loved each other, all of us were family." Kadour said, who is a meat seller with a longing smile and a bit of bitterness sense when asked about the souq in the past. After reopening the souq, he is sitting next to his shop with his little grandchild.

He continues, “Babies are born small, it takes them time to grow up. Today, this market is like a new baby and with time it will grow up and take steps and flourish again.”

Marwan, a nut seller, who had been in the souq since 1967 says,

“We were getting along very well and thankful for God, we were like a family and happy. After the crisis, everything changed.” And when asked about how he felt about reopening the souq he comments, “We felt like starting a new life, the crisis took time and now it is a new start for us. We are re-born. I feel like I am re-born now and I am starting from the very beginning.”

Positivity and Humble Pure Wishes

While entering this market, you feel the holiness of the ancient places and simplicity of life. While talking to the market owners, they have shown great care for each other, which is a relieving feeling and precious because this union is the heart of the traditional Syrian community and the key to a better future.

"We will make up for the past. The government is helping us very much. We will come every day and step by step everything will be back better than before. Today we are here and we will work and with time everything is going to be ok,” says Marwan.

Mohammad who is the grandson of Haj Yasser Kassas selling herbs said, “My grandpa and uncles worked in this market and we inherited this job generation after another and we love it very much. We were once the builders and again we will rebuild it. Everything will go back to normal hopefully and here we are re-born.” You can sense deep belief and confidence.

 Kaddour says, “Today, my daughter, if your brother is fine then you are fine, and if our country fine, we are fine. Evil is bad and we wish for happiness for everyone. We pray to God to bless our country."

Re-opening this market is an important social and commercial event and it is one of the efforts to revive the old city of Aleppo and to regain its commercial and touristic shine. Today, Souq al Sakatieh is given back to its people and visitors in the society and this is only the start.

To be mentioned, the museum in Aleppo is reopened too in the middle of the happiness of its citizens and other souqs and the destruction is being worked on to rebuild Aleppo step by step, the ancient beautiful city, shine in the heart of Syria as it has always been.


Middle East US & Canada Russia