Here's what Syrians think about Donald Trump's win

What does Trump's win in the US presidential election mean for Syria? We posed the question to Syrians who have made Turkey their temporary home.

Photo by: TRT World
Photo by: TRT World

Samer al-Kadri, a 43-year old refugee from Syria, says the victory of Republican Donald Trump did not come as a surprise.

Updated Nov 22, 2016

Will the United States change its policy in Syria under the administration of newly-elected president Donald Trump?

It remains unclear.

Syrian regime leader Bashar al-Assad has called Trump "a natural ally if he fights terrorists". During the presidential campaign, Trump repeatedly said: "I do not like Assad at all, but Assad is killing ISIS". 

For the hundreds and thousands of people trapped in the 'bombing zones' of Syria, the uncertainty may just mean a continuation of the conflict which has devastated the country and killed countless.

But what do Syrians make of Trump's win? Will it change anything for them?

We posed the question to Syrians living in Istanbul's Fatih district.

Here's what they had to say:

"The world will suffer with us" 

Samer Al-Kadri, 43

For me the real question is not how Syria will be affected by Trump's win. The real question is how the world will be affected by Trump? He is crazy and his politics will be dangerous for the world.

We [Syrians] have been suffering for 6 years. Now the world will suffer with us. I think Obama’s policies led Trump to be elected as president. 

But let me say again, the problem here is not how Hillary or Trump won or lost the election. The real problem is how many people voted for Trump. 

Samer moved to Istanbul in 2014 and owns an Arabic language bookstore in Istanbul.

"What happens to Palestine will happen to us” 

Mohammed Riyal, 27

I believe that it’s better for us to talk about Syria rather than talking about America's issues. 

Trump is still new and I cannot say what his policies will be. But I think nothing will change, because what is happening in Syria is just a very old plan and these people are here just to apply it on us.

Briefly, I can say, Syria is the second Palestine. What happens to Palestine will happen to us.

"Obama created Daesh"

Ahmad, 27

I think Trump is going to support Assad, like Obama did. Everyone knows that Obama created Daesh. And when Trump was elected, the first thing he said was "I’m going to end Daesh".

Ahmad did not want his picture taken and did not want to give his surname because he said his family was still living in Syria and they could be targeted by regime forces. He said he was jailed in Syria for no reason and was tortured by the regime forces before he fled to Turkey.


Diplomatic relationships will be a mess with Trump in charge and that won’t be good for Americans, says one Syrian refugee. [Reuters]

"Arabs and Muslims will face more racism"

Imaan Shabaan, 33

“I am going to give my answer not as a Syrian but as an Arab. I believe that we as Arabs and Muslims will face more racism from now on, and I think Trump will not just negatively affect Syria but the whole of the Arab and Islamic world.

In my opinion, I can say that If I had the right to vote in that election, I would vote for Hillary not for Trump. Although I believe she is a liar, I think she would be better than him. But at the end of the day all these elections are just a game under the table. I cannot expect good things from him at all. They are just two sides of the same coin.


Sharifa Haroun, a 28-year old refugee, requested her face not be shown in the photo. Haroun said she did not want to be identified by the Syrian regime. She said she did not care about the US election results because "the policies of Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were the same when it came to the Syrian war". [TRT World]

"We were joking"

Amer Bader, 27

Syrians did not give any attention or importance to this election.

We were joking about it because can it get any worse for us? I do not think so. We have suffered from chemical weapons attacks, bombs, rockets and all these kinds of weapons, so what could be worse than that?

"Not good for Americans"

Ahmet Daiaa, 30

I think Obama was smart enough to save the USA, to control the world and divide the middle east without even sending a single soldier out of America. But Trump won’t be smart like him. 

Diplomatic relationships will be a mess with Trump in charge and that won’t be good for Americans.

We are not going to see any changes, the speeches are the same, they just changed the speaker.

"Europe won't be far from the impact"

George Sabra, 69

We don’t expect any positive additional support to the Syrian people but we still hope.

I think states can’t give up on their responsibility to the world and to the area. The area will be in severe conflict not only years but maybe decades. Something like that already happened previously. And the results of it was very awful, not only for the Syrian people, also for all the people in the area and even in Europe, which won’t be far from the impact of what is happening in the middle east.

George Sabra is a former leader of the Syrian opposition

"Trump won't support Assad"

Muaz, 34

For four years Obama was saying  that Assad will go but in the end he left his position and Assad is still there. I don’t think Trump is going to support Assad. Because he is doing what he sees would favour America.

Author: Bilge Nesibe Kotan

Source: 
TRTWorld