10 March 2014

Souriatna – Our Syria” is a weekly, independent magazine, published in print by a group of young Syrians, who seek to be a free voice of the Syrian people, away from any political or cultural affiliations. Since September 2011, when the first issue of the magazine was published, the founders established a set of principles that continue to exist today, as the magazine celebrates issue number 128.

These principles stem from those of the Syrian civil movement: a strong belief in peaceful activism as a means of change, a rejection of all forms of segregation between Syrian, regardless of their standpoints, as well as a persistent fight to obtain freedom, dignity and social justice.

The magazine covers a wide array of issues, from the political and social to culture and history, in addition to special investigations and interviews on the topics of civil society and human rights. The magazine's Investigations and daily reports are written by ground reporters,” as one of the founders of Souriatna explained to Syrian Untold. “As for violations documentation reports, the team primarily relies on Syrian and foreign human rights organization,” he added.

Souriatna Magazine issue 123. Source: magazine's Facebook page.
Souriatna Magazine issue 123. Source: magazine's Facebook page.

One of the main setbacks took place in the magazine's early beginnings, when the team was unable to publish and distribute Souriatna in Damascus, due to rising security concerns. Nowadays, SMART, the only foundation that funds the magazine, secures printing in the northern governorates and other areas, while the distribution of the magazine is carried out by the integrated efforts of the team. Distribution efforts are faced with terrible conditions even there, because of restrictions imposed by ISIS on journalists.

The magazine aims to empower the voice of the street and its vision,” as the activist puts it, “we are trying to push further the wheel of change by exposing the rampant social issues in society, issues that include corruption, bribery, violence against children, woman and many others.”

Souriatna advocates a fundamental and key idea in the Syrian conflict: Syria is home for all Syrians, and its diversity is what gives it beauty. Thus, the team maintains, we should join efforts to fight against all forms of discrimination and extremism, and build a homeland that holds Syrians together as one.


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Illustation by Dima Nechawi Graphic Design by Hesham Asaad