W/S Revamped bus near Tell Qarah
M/S Revamped bus front
W/S Bus front adorned with prints
W/S Bus seen among crowd of children
M/S Children dancing close to bus as music is heard
W/S People on bus roof
M/S Children chanting slogans while rallying with bus
M/S Image imprinted on bus as children chant
M/S Man rallying children with chants
SOT, Abdo Baskeh, Internally Displaced Person (IDP) from Afrin (Kurdish): "We have renovated this bus which, prior to that, was burned in the war with only the frame left. We revamped it in Shahba, and spent a lot of money on it and then, we had it covered with images from Afrin. For example, pictures of Afrin, the ancient site of Cyrus, Kaveh the Blacksmith, Norouz Roundabout, our livestock and herdsman and all cultural symbols of Afrin. Afrin is famous in its own culture so we have affixed all these images to the bus because it is the bus symbolising the return to Afrin. Whenever we go on rallies for Afrin in Shahba, we use this bus and people get very excited when they see Afrin images posted on it.
M/S Image of 'Kaveh the Blacksmith' on revamped bus *CUTAWAY*
SOT, Abdo Baskeh, Internally Displaced Person (IDP) from Afrin (Kurdish): "We have given our word to our people that no sooner Afrin is liberated than we will drive the bus down Jabal Ahlam to Afrin. Afrin can never be forgotten. Afrin is always present in our hearts. Look. Here is Afrin. We will never forget Afrin and our displaced people will go after this bus in returning to Afrin."
M/S Man inside bus
C/U Control board in bus
M/S Abdo Baskeh and Ibrahim Khalil inside bus *CUTAWAY*
SOT, Ibrahim Khalil, Internally Displaced Person (IDP) from Afrin (Kurdish): "We came across this bus abandoned and destroyed in the village of Tell Qarah. At that moment we, a group of young men, were thinking about making something symbolic representing our return to our homes in Afrin. We took the bus to a workshop to have it reconditioned and renovated. We, some young men from Afrin, got together and decided to renovate this bus, working on it slowly and carefully revamping it and have it covered with images from Afrin for the sake of Afrin IDPs here. Then, we saw how people got excited when they saw the bus. During our first trip on it, children, men, women, both old and young, cheered, gesturing victory signs with their fingers in jubilation and enthusiasm. I saw this and I burst into tears. At that moment I told my pals that we had to make something even better than this one. So, God willing, we will have this bus revamped even better so that the people of Afrin may get more cheery, hopeful and excited. We hope, God willing, we will go down Jabal Ahlam on it. We'll make something bigger than this and we will never forsake Afrin because Afrin is so dear to us that its memories are always fresh in our minds and hearts. We especially made this bus for the people of Afrin to become more enthusiastic and happier so that Afrin may be liberated as soon as possible."
W/S Bus departing
Displaced people from Afrin renovated and customised a bus with images of their city, footage filmed on Monday near Tell Qarah in the northern Aleppo countryside shows, a move they say is designed to boost morale and give colour to rallies in the area.
Ibrahim Khalil, an Afrin local who was displaced, recounted that when they came across this bus in the village of Tell Qarah, it was destroyed. That is when the idea to turn it into a "symbolic token of our going back home to Afrin," came to be he said.
Abdo Baskeh, another Afrin resident who has been displaced, explained that when they go to rallies in Shahba with the revamped bus, "people get very excited when they see images of Afrin posted on it."
"We have given our word to our people that as soon as Afrin is liberated, we will drive the bus down Jabal al-Ahlam to Afrin," he added.
Footage shows children on the 'Return Bus' cheering and making victory signs.
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