SCORCHED EARTH: THEN and NOW The Syrian Conflict: an evening of awareness SATURDAY 28[SUP]TH[/SUP] JULY 2012 – 5:45pm till 8:15pm Gladstone Park Community Centre, Bourges Boulevard, PE1 2AN Dr Uthman Lateef (Royal Holloway, University of London) Paul Conroy (The Sunday Times) For the past 18 months, the region of Shaam has seen a barrage of bloodshed and suffering in Syria after uprisings against a tyrannical regime. People are losing their loved ones in ongoing brutal and unmentionable killings and Bashar al-Assad’s forces still rock the towns of Baba Amr, Homs and Aleppo. It is as if history has repeated itself, just like the Hama massacre in 1982 where Hafiz al-Assad sanctioned the killings of an estimated 40,000 civilians. It is currently a humanitarian crisis. But why does Syria hold such a lofty status and importance for the Muslim Ummah? When did this conflict begin, and why? What are the Alawites, and who exactly are the Free Syrian Army? Who can we trust amongst the wave of conspiratorial theorising, and what can we do as a community to help those in suffering? All of these questions (and more) will be answered in our Ramadhan event. Join us in an evening of Qur’an recitation, words from local leaders of the community, astonishing eyewitness accounts from those who have returned from Syria, video presentations and charity fundraising on behalf of Islamic Relief’s aid campaign.