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When Mohammed Anis refused to leave his home in Syria

Mohammad Mohiedine Anis, 70, smokes his pipe as he sits in his destroyed bedroom listening to music on his vinyl player in the formerly rebel-held al-Shaar neighbourhood in Aleppo.  

Mohammed Anis refused to leave his home in eastern Aleppo in Syria even when fierce fighting broke out last year between government and rebel forces. He showed off his collection of vintage cars to every journalist who was interested, with AFP’s Karamal-Masri writing a moving account. When government forces finally pushed back the rebels in December, an AFP crew, led by photographer Joseph Eid, searched him out. They found Anis, 70, in his bombed-out neighbourhood of al- Shaar, living among the ruins of his home. When they spotted a gramophone and asked whether it still worked, he said ‘yes’ and waited to light up his pipe — taped together — before cranking up the machine, and playing a 1940s Arab song. In a blog, Eid later said: “I knew the scene in front of me was special.” Anis was lost in his own world, at home in the rubble. The photograph, of March 9, went viral, and touched a chord, a portrait of hope amid devastation.

A picture taken on March 9, 2017, shows the interior of the 1947 Plymouth parked outside the home of Mohammad Mohiedine Anis in Aleppo's formerly rebel-held al-Shaar neighbourhood.

A picture taken on March 9, 2017, shows the interior of the 1947 Plymouth parked outside the home of Mohammad Mohiedine Anis in Aleppo's formerly rebel-held al-Shaar neighbourhood.  

 

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2021 6:58:42 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/when-mohammed-anis-refused-to-leave-his-home-in-syria/article17530193.ece

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