The Observers

Syria: TikTok videos show the daily challenges of living in Idlib refugee camp

Ten years after the start of the civil war in Syria, 1.4 million people still live in refugee camps. TikTok user Qusai Shabib posts videos showing the daily struggles of the people living in these camps, in order to draw attention to their cause.
Ten years after the start of the civil war in Syria, 1.4 million people still live in refugee camps. TikTok user Qusai Shabib posts videos showing the daily struggles of the people living in these camps, in order to draw attention to their cause. © Observers

The decade-long conflict in Syria has forced millions of people to flee to northern strongholds held by rebel groups near the border with Turkey. Qusai Shabib, a Syrian activist, has visited several camps in this region, where hundreds of thousands of displaced people are crowded together in precarious conditions. He makes videos that he posts on TikTok to report on the daily life of these families.

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Qusai Shabib's TikTok page has more than 350 thousand followers and nearly 4 million likes. His videos illustrate the daily challenges of refugees in Idlib camps. These camps were built only for temporary accommodation, but many of the families living there have resolved to stay there permanently, having no other options. 

Despite inadequate infrastructure, lack of sewage systems, and no classrooms, the families living in these shelters have managed to create a life for themselves. Shabib recounts:

What moved me a lot while visiting the camps was the fact that the families, despite the harshness of their living conditions, do not give up. They try to lead a dignified life. We try to make the children happy and to make them forget the misery in which they live, through classes and activities for play.