Syria: ‘There are protests every day,’ say socialists

 In Europe, International

Committees organising grassroots struggles are springing up and spreading.

People have joined major protests across Syria against poverty and calling for the downfall of the governing regime. The Revolutionary Left Current in Syria writes for Socialist Worker about the significance of the revolt, after years of horror and division.

The protests began last Sunday, following a decision by the ruling regime of president Bashar al-Assad to increase wages by 100 percent, but at the same time to raise fuel prices by 200 percent.

Wages for Syrians in the area controlled by the Assad regime vary between £8 and £20 a month. This is not enough to live on for even a few days.

Calls for strikes and civil disobedience have been issued by movements such as the 10 August Movement, the Civil Action Movement and our party—Revolutionary Left in Syria.

The masses have responded to these calls, and demonstrations and other forms of protest have been taking place for the past week, especially in the south of the country—Soueida and Daraa, in Damascus, Jaramana, in Aleppo and the coastal towns of Tartous and Latakia.

These protests have had echoes in Hama, Salamieh, and the north east (under Turkish occupation). Every day there are demonstrations and protests.

The protest movement is in its infancy, and it’s difficult to predict its future. It is subject to manoeuvring by the regime itself and the pro-Turkish liberal opposition.

But democratic and left wing movements are also taking an active part.

A coordinating committee for the strike and civil disobedience was set up three days ago under the name “Qaouem”, which means “Resist” in Arabic.

It’s made up of several active movements, including our party. So we’re fighting a two-pronged battle—against the regime and against conservative and counter-revolutionary currents.

The outcome will depend on our ability to mobilise the Syrian masses for radical democratic and social change.

Committees organising grassroots struggles are springing up and spreading.

A majority of the movement has learned from the failures and lessons of the first wave of the revolution 12 years ago. The Syrian people have no illusions about being saved by the United States or any other country. Their salvation lies in their own hands.

The masses in the movement are fighting for peace, the release of prisoners, the return of refugees and displaced persons, reunification, democratic change and the withdrawal of all foreign armed forces from Syrian soil. They also want policies of social justice.

In this struggle, our party is pushing ahead the fight for socialism.

For more on the Revolutionary Left Current in Syria go to

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