HLP

21-01-2021

Displaced people from Hujeira, a town south of Damascus, are required to obtain prior security approval from the General Intelligence Directorate before returning to their homes, years after most of them fled battles in the area.

14-01-2021

The final months of 2020 saw an unprecedented rate of demolitions targeting so-called “building violations” in the form of an organised campaign that began in Hama governorate, and then expanded to Damascus Countryside, Quneitra, Suweida and Deir-ez-Zor. Even during the winter holidays, provincial councils mobilised and continued to demolish buildings into New Year’s Eve, implementing what pro-government websites described as “strict orders” from a high-level political authority.

14-01-2021

The number of property purchases in several neighbourhoods of east Aleppo has increased recently, often after residents faced intimidation or threats. The purchases have been carried out by armed militias on behalf of several real estate development and investment companies, including Katerji for Real Estate Development and Investment, which has acquired the largest share of homes and real estate from internally and forcibly displaced people in this manner.

13-01-2021

In recent weeks, the Damascus governorate has resumed paying late rent allowances for 2020 and part of 2019 to residents entitled to alternative housing in the Marota City construction project, following a long interruption in payments. The governorate blamed the delayed payments on the Covid-19 pandemic, despite the fact that the latest delay was not the first of its kind in recent years.

07-01-2021

For the first time since regime forces recaptured the Wadi Barada area west of Damascus in 2017, the government permitted displaced residents to visit the area in December 2020 to inspect their properties in the towns  of Ayn Al-Fijeh, Basimeh and Ayn Al-Khudra.

24-12-2020

The head of Syria’s Forgery and Counterfeits Branch, Col. Wassim Maarouf, revealed last week that the agency had caught a network using fraudulent power of attorney to sell real estate belonging to Syrian expatriates and others who had left the country. The Forgery and Counterfeits Branch is part of the Criminal Security Department of the Ministry of Interior.

24-12-2020

The following is an interview with Sawsan Abou Zainedin, a Syrian architect and urban development planner. She works as a researcher on addressing the challenges of Syria’s reconstruction and recovery with a number of organisations including with the Syrian Centre for Policy Research and the Syrian Women’s Political Movement.

17-12-2020

The industrial complex for repairing cars in Damascus’s Qadam neighbourhood remains only partly functional, despite claims by the government that it has been rehabilitated. The fate of the complex is unclear in light of the government’s intentions to restrict all car-related occupations to a car expo centre complex under construction in Al-Dweir, northeast of the capital city.

17-12-2020

The Damascus Countryside governorate last week launched a campaign to demolish what it calls “building violations” in various parts of rural Damascus. The campaign included buildings in Darayya, Jdeidet Artouz, Sahnaya and Harasta, though official pro-government media only focused its attention on the demolition of buildings in the town of Al-Sabboura that had not been constructed according to building regulations.

17-12-2020

According to the Real Estate Development and Investment Law No. 15 of 2008, so-called “real estate development zones” include properties both within and outside zoning plans. The properties needed to set up a real estate development zone are secured either from state property, from the properties of the local administrative unit, the private properties of development companies or from the properties of private individuals.