WRUR 88.5 Different Radio

Alison Meuse

A United Nations report says both Russian-backed Syrian forces and rebel factions committed war crimes in the besieged eastern districts of Aleppo between July 21 and Dec. 22, 2016, when the city was recaptured by the government.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Syrian peace talks got started again in Geneva this week. One Syrian woman hopes to get an issue on the agenda - the fate of hundreds of thousands of people detained. It is a very personal issue for her, as NPR's Alison Meuse reports.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

In the northern Syrian city of Aleppo, tens of thousands of people have fled a brutal, Russian-backed regime offensive against rebel-held parts of the city. Many have fled deeper into the tightening siege, which started over the summer. Others have sought safety on the government-held side.

My conversation with a woman who recently fled the siege begins with her asking how I am. She's safe now, but is still afraid to give her name. She fears for her son — still fighting with the rebels — and for other male relatives who've been detained by the regime for questioning.

The story has been done before: A Western journalist visits the Old City, checks in at a swinging bar and churns out a dispatch about Syrians partying as the war rages on. At this moment, the world's attention is on the showdown in Aleppo. But after a string of sleepless nights preparing for a trip this week to Syria that appeared out of thin air, I was ready for a glass myself.

From the outside, the Syrian war may appear to consume every corner of the country. But inside an ancient Damascus bazaar, the war can feel very far away.

The covered Hamidiyeh bazaar has always been a place filled with treasures, and it still feels like the heartbeat of the capital, with throngs of shoppers passing through its grand, gently winding thoroughfare.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Pages