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___ Syria (سورية‎)

Ruins of Palmyra in 2010
The ruins of Palmyra in 2010, the city was one of the most important cultural centers of the ancient world, since 1980 a UNESCO World Heritage Site, located southwest of the modern city of Tadmur. In 2015 so called Islamic State (IS or Daesh) destroyed parts of the city.
Image: Bernard Gagnon

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Flag of Syria
where in the Middle East is Syria?
Location map of Syria

Syria is a country in the Middle East, with a coastline at the eastern Mediterranean Sea. It is bordered by Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey, and it shares maritime borders with Cyprus.

The country occupies an area of 185,180 km², it is about twice the size of Portugal or slightly larger than U.S. state of North Dakota.

Syria has a population of 24 million people. It is home to a variety of ethnic and religious groups, including Kurds, Armenians, Assyrians, Christians, Druze, Alawite Shia and Arab Sunnis, the last of who make up a majority of the Muslim population.

The Assad family who maintained power in the country for more than 45 years are Alawite, Hafez al-Assad strengthened loyalty to his regime by appointing many Alawites to senior positions, particularly in the numerous security services. The family also has long standing ties with Russia, Hafez al-Assad allied himself with the Soviet Union, and sought to lead an Arab coalition bent on the defeat of Israel.

Syrian Arab Republic | Suriyah

Country Profile

Syria was the site of various early civilizations, most notably that of the Phoenicians. Falling successively within the empires of Persia, Macedon, and Rome, it became a center of Islamic power and civilization from the 7th century and a province of the Ottoman Empire in 1516.

Following the breakup of the Ottoman Empire during World War I, Syria was administered by the French until independence in 1946.

From 1958 to 1961, Syria was united with Egypt as the United Arab Republic, a Syrian coup in 1961 dissolved the union.

In the 1967 Arab-Israeli War, Syria lost the Golan Heights to Israel. Since 1976, Syrian troops have been stationed in Lebanon, ostensibly in a peacekeeping capacity.

President of the Syrian Arab Republic is Bashar al-Assad, he is also Regional Secretary of the Ba'ath Party. Ba'athism calls for unification of the Arab world into a single state.

Bashar al-Assad became president after the death of his father Hafez al-Assad, who held office from 1970 until his death in 2000.

Influenced by major uprisings that began in Tunisia, antigovernment protests broke out first in the southern province of Dar'a in March 2011. Protesters calling for the repeal of the restrictive Emergency Law allowing arrests without charge, the legalization of political parties, and the removal of corrupt local officials. Demonstrations and violent unrest spread across Syria and led ultimately to a full-scale civil war, involving regional and international powers.

Syria is a member state of the League of Arab States


Official Name:
Al Jumhuriyah al Arabiyah as Suriyah
local short form: Suriyah, Arabic: سورية‎ Sūriyya
int'l long form: Syrian Arab Republic
int'l short form: Syria
formerly: United Arab Republic (with Egypt)

ISO Country Code: sy

Actual Time: Mon-Apr-24  10:29
Local Time = UTC +2h
Summer (DST) April - October (UTC +3)

Country Calling Code: +963

Capital City: Damascus (Dimashq)

Other Cities:
Aleppo (4.2 million), Homs (1.6 million), Hama (1.6 million), Lattakia (1 million)

Type: Republic, under Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party regimes since March 1963.
Independence: 17 April 1946.
Constitution: 12 March 1973.

Location:Middle East, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Lebanon and Turkey
Area: 185,180 km² (71,504 sq. mi.), including 1 295 sq. km. of Israeli-occupied territory
Terrain: Narrow coastal plain with a double mountain belt in the west; large, semiarid and desert plateau to the east.

Climate: Mostly desert; hot, dry, sunny summers (June to August) and mild, rainy winters (December to February) along coast.

Nationality: Syrian(s)
Population: 23 million (2015)
GNI per capita PPP: $ 3 871 (year)
Major ethnic groups: Arabs (90%), Kurds (9%), Armenians, Circassians, Turkomans
Religions: Sunni Muslims (74%), Alawis (12%), Christians (10%), Druze (3%), and small numbers of other Muslim sects, Jews, and Yazidis
Languages: Arabic (official), English and French (widely understood), Kurdish, Armenian, Aramaic, Circassian
Literacy: 78% male, 51% female.

Natural resources:
Petroleum, phosphates, chrome and manganese ores, asphalt, iron ore, rock salt, marble, gypsum, hydropower.

Agriculture products: Wheat, barley, cotton, lentils, chickpeas, olives, sugar beets; beef, mutton, eggs, poultry, milk.

Industries: Petroleum, textiles, food processing, beverages, tobacco, phosphate rock mining.

Currency: Syrian Pound (SYP)

Syria in Figures
Syria key statistical data.

Note: External links will open in a new browser window.  

Official Sites of Syria

Syrian Parliament
Official website of Syria's Parliament (in Arabic).

Syria Ministry of Tourism
Official site with general information on Syria.

Diplomatic Missions
Syrian Embassy in the US
The Embassy of Syria in Washington, D.C. is the suspended diplomatic mission of the Syrian Arab Republic to the United States.

Syrian Embassy in Oman
Syrian Embassy - Belgium
Syrian Embassy-London
Syrian Embassy Canada

List of diplomatic missions in Syria
Diplomatic missions in Syria. During the Syrian Uprising of 2011-2012, many have been closed, withdrawn their ambassadors, or temporarily relocated to Beirut.

Central Bureau of Statistics
National Statistical Office of Syrian Arab Republic.

Syria in Figures
Syria key statistical data.

Map of Syria
Political Map of Syria.
Topographic Map of Syria
Shaded relief map showing Syria's topographic features.
Google Earth Google Earth Syria
Searchable map/satellite view of Syria.
Google Earth Google Earth Damascus
Searchable map/satellite view of Syria's capital city.

Map of Northern Africa and the Middle East
Political Map of of North Africa, the Arabian Peninsula and the Middle East.
profile Map of Western Asia
Map of Western Asia and the Middle East region.

Street in destroyed city of Homs
Ruins in Baba Amr district in southwestern city of Homs.
Image: Freedom House

Syria News

Al Baath
Syrian Newspaper (in Arabic)

Government-owned daily (in Arabic)

A private news agency with news in Arabic.

Syrian Arab News Agency.

Syria Today
Monthly magazine (offline).

A government-owned daily (offline).

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Business & Economy

Syria's economy continues to deteriorate amid the ongoing conflict, declining by 62% from 2010 to 2014. The government has struggled to address the effects of international sanctions, widespread infrastructure damage, diminished domestic consumption and production, reduced subsidies, and high inflation (over 38%). More than 80% of the population live below poverty line, the unemployment rate is more than 50%.

Ministry of Economy and Foreign Trade
Official website of the ministry.

Federation of the Syrian Chambers of Commerce
Federation comprising 14 Chambers of Commerce and Industry in Syria.

Syrian Enterprise & Business Centre (SEBC)
Syrian-European Business Center.

Central Bank of Syria
Official website of Central Bank of Syria.

Syrian Air
Syrian Arab Airlines are operating as Syrian Air, it is the flag carrier airline of Syria.

Country Guides

Syria Ministry of Tourism
General Information on Syria, the official travel and tourism guide.

Café Syria
A comprehensive country guide to Syria.
A guide to Damascus one of the oldest city in the world.

A travel & tourism agency offers Syria tourist information.

Weblog of a Syrian Diplomat in America
The journal of Imad Moustapha, Syria's envoy to the US.

Hotels in Syria
Find a Hotel in Syria.


Aleppo University
University of Aleppo is a public university located in Aleppo, second largest city in Syria. It is the second largest university in Syria after the University of Damascus (university website in Arabic).

Damascus University
Information on the largest and oldest University in Syria, established in 1903, it has campuses in several other Syrian cities.
The University consists of several faculties, higher institutes, intermediate institutes and a Faculty of Dentistry. There is an institution specialized in teaching the Arabic language to foreigners, which is the largest institution of its kind in the Arab world.


Environment & Nature

Modernisation Programme for the Syrian Water Sector - GIZ
The primary objective of the Syrian-German water programme is to support the institutions of the water sector in their endeavour to improve the organizational and institutional framework conditions in order to achieve a sustainable and fair coverage of water demand for the various user groups.



 Syria's History
Outline of Syria's History, from the time of Greater Syria until Syria today.

Syrian History
A Syrian website documenting the recent history of Syria, from 1900 to 2000, by Sami Moubayed.

History of Syria
Wikipedia: History of Syria.



Syrian Search Engine.
Syria On The Internet, a Syria related index.
Syria Online
Another Syria portal.

Additional Information on Syria

BBC News Country Profile: Syria

Library of Congress: SYRIA - A Country Study

Open Directory Project: Syria

Wikipedia: Syria

The World Factbook -- Syria
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