CHARLESTON, W.Va. — “Free, free, free Syria!”
That was the cry heard from the steps of the state Capitol Wednesday night from members of the Syrian American Council of West Virginia and Friends of Syria. It was a rally and prayer service for the latest victims in Syria.
Around 50 people stood on the state Capitol steps along Kanawha Blvd waiving banners, Syria and United States flags and chanting for intervention.
“I know everybody is sick of wars. I’m sick of wars, but enough is enough,” said Charleston resident Dirar Ahmad, calling for the United States to step in.
The rally came in response to last week’s chemical weapons attack in Syria that left hundreds of citizens dead and thousands injured. An investigation conducted by the United Nations uncovered that the Syrian government—led by President Bashar Assad—was the source of those weapons.
“We need to stand up for morality, we need to draw a line in the sand and say, ‘Assad, your days are numbered. We warned you not to use chemical weapons, you used them over three times that we know of. No more.’”
Local physician Dr. Samer Nasher said Assad has gone too far.
“This president has no respect for human beings and no respect to international laws,” he said.
Nasher has family still in Syria and is concerned for their safety.
“I feel like there’s destruction, physical and humanistic, on every front and that’s how it affects me every day,” he said.
Reports indicated U.S. officials were working on designing a possible military strike against Syria that would deter from the use of further chemical weapons.
Nasher said that a change is already being seen in Syria simply with President Barack Obama’s recent comments about intervening.
“In the last 48 hours since the president said we are serious about intervening and punishing this behavior a lot of the big, high rank military officers with this president are starting to flee the country,” he said.