Syria: “It Feels as if Syria is Two Countries – With Two Different Realities”

This post is part of our special coverage Syria Protests 2011.

CNN has officially been granted access to Syria and Arwa Damon is tweeting from Damascus, three months after protests calling for the overthrow of the Assad regime started. Syria shut its doors to Arab and international media after the start of the protests and the world has to choose between reports on social media or statements and coverage from Syrian government officials.

Here are some of Damon's first impressions.

Four hours ago, she tweeted:

CNN has officially been granted access to #syria. am in damascus…off to meet govt minder who accompanies us on all shoots

And a few minutes ago, she updated us saying:

we visited the area around old damascus t'day…nearly surreal contrast w/images of suffering we've been seeing from other parts of #syria

Damon says some Syrians were angry with what they described as the West meddling in Syria:

quite a few people angrily approached us saying US & west have no business meddling in #syria

She continues:

govt says only targeting armed grps & officials ask us why world so focused on 10K #syria refugees when US-led iraq war displaced millions?

and observes:

its feels as if #syria is 2 countries w/ppl living in 2 different realities.

She concludes:

we asked to be taken on friday (tomorrow) to the areas where the demo's usually happen…let see if request is granted. #syria

Meanwhile, Al Jazeera International‘s Rula Amin has been tweeting regularly from Syria since the beginning of the protests. It seems there are no other ‘official’ international Press tweeting from Damascus at this time.

This post is part of our special coverage Syria Protests 2011.

Thumbnail image of Syrian flag by Flickr user Beshroffline (CC BY-ND 2.0).

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