Friday, March 2, 2012

EC Interview : Mulham Al Jundi , our man in #Homs

Mulham Al Jundi is the young citizen journalist from Homs who managed to get in to the city despite the El Assad forces’ strong siege. Al Jundi gained popularity in the social media as well international mainstream media as most websites now use his photos from Homs “Which I posted here , check 1, 2, 3” as well his live

Mulham El Jundi in Homs
Mulham El Jundi in Homs
stream footage.

The young SNC member was injured earlier last week in his leg thanks to a bloody El Assad’s sniper on some rooftop. Still he was like the ambassador of the media in Homs.

I was lucky enough to speak with Mulham for couple of minutes online on February 28,2012 after  , here is our short interview.

EC : How are things in Homs today “February 28th,2012” , is the shelling today as strong as in the past 25 days ?

MJ : Things are the same in Bab Amr yet the shelling was less tense in other quarters , the shelling today is concentrated in Bab Amr and Job Al Jandali quarters.

EC : We have seen the photos you took from Homs’ quarters and I notice that

Bullet holes in Riyad El Salahin mosque halls
Bullet holes in Riyad El Salahin mosque halls
the buildings seemed to be deserted , where do the people go ? Did the families leave to another quarter or another governorate ?

MJ : There are some people who moved to other quarters while other people left Homs to Damascus. There are some people that took shelter in the mosques

EC: And the mosques themselves are being shelled !!

MJ : This is what we can do now , we can not do more than that , we can try to provide them safety as well shelter in other homes. Some Syrians abroad gave their keys to the people in Homs so the families live there , some people are hosting complete families in their homes thus having two families instead of one because of the shelling.

EC : What about the food and medicine supply to the city ? Is the food smuggled from other governorates as the city is besieged ? The photos you took show field

Field hospital in Karm El Zaytoun
Field hospital in Karm El Zaytoun
hospitals set up in Pharmacies with the current supply in the city , does anyone try to get supplies in to the besieged cities ?

MJ : We buy and bring supplies from other governorates , there are warehouses prepared to keep the food and medicine in case of invasion but the problem is in Baba Amr. We can not get access in to Baba Amr unlike other quarters.I do not know if you heard about the incident where the El Assad troops killed about 60 young men from Bab Amr from two days , we do not know if they had women or elder or children.

EC : Is the Free Syrian army inside Bab Amr ? Are not there any operations outside the quarter in order to lessen the pressure on its people ? “This interview was before the storming of Bab Amr in the past two days”

MJ : The problem we can’t help to lessen the pressure outside Bab Amr because El Assad army got tanks , the Free Syrian army has not got tanks. All what they have from weaponry in Bab Amr is light arms in order to protect the civilians. Now if the El Assad army decides to go in to Bab Amr with tanks , it will be a lost battle for the Free Syrian army. 

EC : Like what happened in Hama in 1982.

MJ :Exactly , El Assad’s army up till now did not storm the city with tanks for a reason beyond me, it is only bombarding the city , may be they do not want losses in the army if there is ground offensive. It depends on bombardment from the university area , from Homs’ castle

“Again this interview took place on February 28,2012”

EC : What about the other quarters , we know that Homs got several quarters and the El Assad forces attack other quarters besides Bab Amr like Karm El Zaitoun and El Khalidiya. In February 2012 the bombardment was focused on 6 quarters only , correct me if I am wrong. Why does the Syrian Arab army focus on these quarters ? Why does it target Bab Amr ?

MJ :In the beginning of the revolution last year there was that personnel problems between big ranked Alawi officers from El Assad army and those big figures from the elder in Bab Amr that are widely respected by the residents , verbal fights took place then those army officers claimed in their report that there are militant gangs , tanks , helicopters and rockets in Bab Amr. That report presented to the commanders of the army made them believe they should wipe that quarter and that why they had to focus on it.

EC : Ok I am going to ask the next question and I am sorry if it is a silly one but unfortunately the Arab and Egyptian media and some Salafist parties in Egypt show the matter as if it were a sectarian issue between the Shiite and Sunni Sects , you are currently in the battlefield , do you see that it is sectarian conflict or the a fight against a dictatorship that uses sectarianism to divide the people. Describe what is really taking place because in the Egyptian parliament there are MPs that consider it a sectarian conflict ?

MJ : For 40 years we are living in Syria , Syria is one of the country with multi-sects , we got Muslims, Salafists, Christians, Alawis , Jews. We do not have sectarian problems , just personal problems. Since the start of the revolution in Daraa and the regime started to use the sectarian game in order to turn the Alawis and the Shiites against the revolution. It used to accuse the Salafists and Muslims at first. From two days I could not go to the field hospitals I used to go because of the bombardment and went for the first time a field hospital near where I am staying. That field hospital is being operated by our brothers from Christians and they welcomed me. They are supporting the revolution and treat the injured. They know that Bashar El Assad uses sectarianism to break down the revolution. Some people understand the whole issue correctly while others are fooled by the media.

EC : Did El Assad troops really destroy the big old clock of El Khalidiya square yesterday ?

MJ : We got this news as you did and we checked from it and it turned to be untrue Thank God.

EC : Ok this is the last thing,  I want you tell your friends that we are not silent in Cairo ,today we had a big march from Cairo University representing the university students holding a very long Syrian flag , the Syrian flag of independence.They went to the Syrian embassy then they headed to the Russian embassy. We are all with you.

MJ : Thank you.

Ok I admit that I am not good in interviews and I know that I should ask Mulham a lot of questions but I felt that I had already asked him a lot of questions indeed on that day. 

Here are the latest photos Mulham El Jundi has uploaded online showing areas in the city of Homs covered in snow. You can notice how deserted they area.

And this is the latest video Mulham recorded from Homs showing a protest in this cold weather , thank God the spirit of those great people is high.

1 comment:

  1. Good coverage. Its obvious Assad thinks if he can crack Bab Amr his problems are over. When will dictators learn. He probably hasn't sent in tanks, the rumor has it, because he's worried they would defect and then the opposition would have real firepower.

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