Jordanians are flocking to the Syrian capital Damascus for the first time in years for tourism and trade after the reopening of a border crossing that had been closed through years of war.
The border opened to people and goods on Oct. 15, restoring a route that had carried billions of dollars in trade for the region.
"The first day that Syria opened up, I came. This is my second time since then," said Mahmoud Nassar, 62, a flight engineer from Jordan's northern city of Ramtha.
"This is a visit of tourism and of yearning for (Damascus)," said Nassar, who drove in with his father and son. "The road is safe and there were no problems."
Syrian government forces retook the border region with Jordan from rebels in July during a Russian-backed offensive.
The crossing had been closed since rebels captured it in 2015, though many are making the trip for the first time since 2011, when the Syrian conflict first erupted.
The Jordanian side of the frontier was jammed with vehicles waiting to cross on Friday. "What we see is the situation is good, things are fine," said Razzan al-Hattab, a Jordanian waiting to cross. "I love Sham (Damascus), so I wanted to be one of the first to try going in a tourist group."
"I will visit every week"
LEAVE A COMMENT Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked*
Tunisia seeks to stem wave of night-time street riots
Iran commandos start drills near mouth of Gulf
Tunisia arrests over 600, deploys troops after riots
Kuwait's Amir accepts resignation of cabinet
Egypt unveils treasures found at ancient site
UN welcomes decision to hold Palestinian elections
Tunisian PM appoints ministers in sweeping cabinet reshuffle
UNSC approves new Libya mediator
Iran test-fires ballistic missiles on targets at sea