Somaya left Homs after finding the corpse of her tortured son in a sewage ditch. Zaynab escaped with her family when she discovered that Syrian soldiers had kidnapped, raped and killed three of her schoolmates. Aziza fled after both her husband and sister-in-law were killed by snipers. Like thousands of other Syrian women who escaped to Lebanon, they are now hiding in small villages within a few kilometers of the border, at the mercy of the Hezbollah and secret service agents allied with the Assad regime.
Far from the safety of the refugee camps in Turkey, here Syrian women live in constant fear of being kidnapped or killed, hiding all day long in filthy basements and makeshift tents, consuming their last, meager savings to barely survive in a country that doesn't want them.Ignored by the Lebanese government, which refuses to recognize them as refugees, they cannot work and raise money for their families. Separated from their relatives and friends, unable to send their kids to school, some are even starting to question the outcome of the Syrian revolution, regretting the peaceful life they used to live before the Arab Spring.We have collected the personal stories and pictures of more than twenty Syrian women, recording their feelings of grief, bitterness and hope for the future of their country. All of them are shown with their faces covered, to protect their safety.
— Matilde Gattoni
This work won the Lens Culture International Exposure Awards 2012, 3rd Prize in the Portfolio Category.