Syrian students stuck in limbo

Walid Ikhlassi at Balamand University

Walid Ikhlassi at Balamand University

Eric Reidy – Al-Jazeera English – 15 November 2014

When Walid Ikhlassi left his home in the Syrian city of Aleppo in 2010 to attend university in Lebanon, his future appeared far more certain. He would complete his degree in architecture at Balamand University, located near the northern city of Tripoli, and return to Aleppo to work in his father’s civil engineering company.

“I already had an office there and everything,” Ikhlassi told Al Jazeera. “My future was planned.”

Four years later, his entire family has left Syria due to the civil war, and his father’s company no longer exists. As for Ikhlassi, “I [no longer] know what is going to happen next year.”

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“Beirut Has a Special Magic”: An interview with Syrian artist Gylan Safadi

Beirut – SKeyes – Eric Reidy – 2 December 2012:


“I could not paint in colors anymore,” says artist Gylan Safadi about his current exhibition at ARTLAB gallery in Gemmayzeh. The exhibition, entitled “Ashes”, was an attempt by Safadi to salvage memories of faces, friends, dreams, and experiences amidst the destruction of war in Syria.

Safadi was born in Soueida, Syria in 1977. A graduate of Damascus University’s Faculty of Fine Arts, he lived and worked in Syria until coming to Beirut a month ago.

Damscus was a good place to work as an artist before the beginning of the Syrian revolution in 2011, says Safadi. Now, he says, “the city has changed. Everything is broken…

IMG_1671Continue reading the interview here.