Sabeen Damascus, Syria

Sabeen is an Iraqi refuge now living in Damascus (Al-Sham), Syria. This photo is taken in old Damascus when an exhibition was arranged about Iraq.

Sabeen studied archeology, so she got a job at Maaloula. Ma’loula is a town in Syria dominated by speakers of Western Neo-Aramaic. With two other nearby towns Bakh’a and Jubb’adin , it is the only place where the Western branch of the Aramaic languages is still spoken. The town is located 56 km to the northeast of Damascus, and built into the rugged mountainside, at an altitude of more than 1500 meters. The distance and geological features only aided the longevity of this linguistic oasis for over one and half thousand years. However, modern roads and transportation, as well as accessibility to Arabic-language television and print media – and for some time until recently, also state policy – have eroded that linguistic heritage.

Sabeen is settled in Damascus with her family and looking forward to establish her there as situation of her home country is not very good.

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