North Texans with family in Syria say they're in agony as they watch the violence in their home country.
There are people from Syria who are now U.S. citizens in North Texas that are forced to watch what’s happening to thousands of people in Aleppo as they struggle to survive.
From his home in North Texas, Dr. Wareef Kabbani can only watch helplessly as the people in his native Aleppo suffer.
“Every day, we always try and make phone calls and make sure that everybody is doing fine, that everybody is having food and having medicine,” he said. “It's been a catastrophic situation on all the levels — humanitarian, medical. There's absolutely a lack of food, water, and medicine there. People are under siege.”
Kabbani a pathologist in Richardson and immigrated to the United States 20 years ago. But some of his family remained in Syria's largest city that has turned into a hell-ish war zone. He says his father-in-law was shot dead by a sniper in 2012. Just recently, his cousin was injured by shelling.
“It's everyday life for them,” Kabbani said. “Every time people wake up in the morning, they don't know if they are going to be back to their families or not. They say goodbye every day. That has been their lives for the last five years.”
Now in Aleppo, there is even more chaos after a failed ‘cease fire’ that was meant to allow civilians trapped by the fighting in eastern Aleppo to evacuate. An earlier agreement collapsed when Syrian government forces resumed bombing, and buses for evacuations sat empty.
Suhaib Allababidi is a U.S. citizen originally from Syria. He is helping organize a demonstration in Dallas on Saturday in hopes that the North Texas Syrian community can help put pressure on U.S. officials to intervene.
“People have to be saved. People have to be helped, and this is our obligation. It's our humane obligation to help those people dying,” he said. “We are the most powerful county in the world, and we do represent democracy in this country. We have to protect the people who tried to seek democracy as much as we can.”
And Dr. Kabbani remains hopeful the people who need help will get it quickly before thousands more die.
“If the major political powers, including the U.S., exercise some sort of pressure on all the parties involved to stop the blood shedding then it's doable,” he said. “I'm pretty sure it's doable.”
Local Syrians say they plan to demonstrate in Dealey Plaza on Saturday. The theme will be ‘Stand for Aleppo. Demand the protection of civilians.’