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Fatih: A Little Syria in Istanbul

The Fatih district has become a de facto home to thousands of Syrians looking to start a new life in the Turkish city, with the suburb offering many sights, flavors and sounds that visitors can often find in different parts of Syria, opposition website Zaman al-Wasl writes
Fatih: A Little Syria in Istanbul

Fatih is an Istanbul neighborhood bordered by the Golden Horn to the north and the Sea of Marmara to the south, and extends west to the ancient Theodosian Walls of Constantinople. So then, what is the face of Damascus doing here?

Here, on the European side of the Bosphorus, visitors can eat Damascene shawarma and buy bay leaf soap from Aleppo, as well as strange and unique herbs and spices used for cooking. Turks reluctantly try falafel and buy products in shops adorned with signs in Arabic. So one begins to wonder, who is hosting whom in this neighborhood?

The neighborhood, extending from Yenikapi by the sea to Eminonu with its mosques and markets, exhales the bustling of tourists and inhales a Damascene scent. Fatih has become a destination even for Syrians living in other parts of Istanbul, who wish to purchase Syrian goods, eat Syrian foods and meet with their relatives, friends and fellow countrymen.

Fatih now hosts thousands of Syrians who have come to the city in search of a new life, turning the district into a little Syria with features like Damascus, flavors from Aleppo and the atmosphere of a Homs neighborhood.

Zaman al-Wasl TV documented the features of this little Syria, the activities of its inhabitants and their lives in this video.

This article was edited by The Syrian Observer. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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