Syria’s train service were finally back on track on Friday with a short trip in capital Damascus after four years of suspension due to the worsening security situation in the war-torn country. syrian flag
The eight-km trip, back and forth, kicked off from the al-Rabweh station west of Damascus to the Dumar station amid a high public turnout.
The work to make the train running again is not easy. The Syrians have been preparing for the resumption of train service for more than a month. They believe that, with trains up and running, the country’s hard-hit domestic tourism would be revived.
Earlier estimates suggested that because of the long-running conflict, Syria tourism has lost 96 percent of its revenues.
Officials said that Friday’s trip would be extended to other stations when the security situation gets better in the countryside of Damascus. They added that there will be two trips each day on the same route.
In al-Rabweh, hundreds of people gathered around the train, singing, dancing and waving the Syrian flags.
“We’ve come here today to revive our hopes and to have our kids see the train. It has been a long time since my kids had fun due to the tough circumstances,” said Wasim Qattan, a passenger.
He said the restart of the train service, even though for a short distance, means “a new hope for us that our lives could regain some normalcy.”
Adnan al-Hasan, another passenger, said “Life must go on in Syria despite all of the circumstances. We know that the armed groups have targeted the railway sector as part of the broader war on Syria but we must be stronger.”
Hasanain Ali, general manager of the Syrian railways, said “the railway sector is one of the sectors that support the national economy.”
“We have insisted to revive the train and we made the necessary maintenance work for launching trips on this route al-Rabweh-Dumar. We will activate this service for transportation and domestic tourism,” he added. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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