Syria: War for peace { 31 images } Created 27 Feb 2012

Syria's north-western corner is a vital gateway for the struggle against Bashar al-Assad and his onslaught against his people. Syria's Idlib province neighbours Turkey's Hatay; home to thousands of refugees, humanitarian supplies, the Syrian Free Army leadership, and vital communication with the outside world.

The Free Syrian Army (FSA) are fighting to remain in control of the olive groves that trace the borderline, in the hope of maintaining some breathing space for the local population. Small towns and villages have become fierce battle grounds, with front lines ever shifting according to government military movements.

With the price of a Kalashnikov bullet having increased from 20¢ to $4 in recent months the FSA are limited to defending territory rather than making strategic attacks. Neighbouring countries have helped arm the resistance, but with supplies low and demand high, weapons and ammunition are both unaffordable and unobtainable.

For now at least the besieged towns and cities in the area are strong enough to hold the lines, but the future hangs in a precarious balance.

Al-Janoudiyah and the surrounding Idlib province, north western Syria, 2012
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