Abd al-Basset al-Sarout

Photos of Abdelbaset Al-Sarout on Friday 20 January 2017 leading a demonstration against the Astana Conference that Turkey held with Russia and Iran on Syria at the time.

Abd al-Basset al-Sarout was one of the most prominent organizers of protests in Syria.

Early in the Syrian revolution of 2011, he led protests that brought together hundreds of thousands of demonstrators in Homs province then in northern Syria.

He was a prominent soccer player in Syria, turned from a protester into a rebel then led a group of rebels.

His brothers and a large number of his fighters were killed during Iranian and Syrian clashes on the besieged city of Homs.

On June 8, 2019, great sadness swept across Syria. Aziz Al-Asmar, Graffiti of the Syrian Revolution, began painting a large mural after people were shocking news tell that Al-Sarout was killed in clashes against pro-Assad forces, north of Hama province, in northern Syria.

It was one of the saddest days in the Syrian revolution.

Al-Sarout was buried with a large funeral ceremony in the city of Al-Dana, north of the Idlib provinces in , northwestern Syria.

It was a very tragic and sad day. The situation was so poignant that it was very difficult to take the photos and tell the story, or even to scroll through the photos and repost them years later.

Sarout fans and football players who defected from pro-Assad teams was in the city of Idlib,gathered to say their final farewells and funeral prayers.

Al-Sarout, who did not receive any financial support with his group, was poor, honest and very simple. He believed so deeply in the Syrian revolution, sacrificed all his dreams, joined the revolution, and continued until the end.

At a rally in Idlib city in early 2017 Sarout told the crowd: “I do not have any accounts on social media. I do not need them because I am always with you in the squares and in the battles and in most difficulties.”

Read more about al-Sarout in this story reported by Harun al-Aswad for Middle East Eye.