Basel al-Ibrahim was born in the Syrian city of Aleppo. When he grew up he memorised every corner of every building on every street, later spending years of his life filming the crisis in the country. He was well known by the people of Aleppo as he had traversed the whole city.
In 2013 when he became a media activist bent on documenting crimes done against the people of Syria, he did the unthinkable.
His mother had pleaded with him to leave ‘meaningless’ journalism behind as his life was constantly in danger but he refused, asking his mom to allow him the happiness he wants.
The same year he started documenting was when the barrel bombing began. Unfortunately during that period, no single journalist was available on the inside of Aleppo to film it so he decided to do the work himself.
In his line of work, he went on to become the only person supplying footage from the inside of Aleppo. His objective was to document only crimes committed but turned doctor after blasts in parts of the city left people in desperation needing help, therefore he decided to become a ‘doctor’ somehow and help those buried but still alive in the rubble.
On November 15th 2016, he and his photographer friend witnessed a rocket explode right next to them. He even admits that his friend thought that it was the last day of their lives. The house had collapsed right on top of them and Basel did what he does best, film.
He did this while trying to free himself from the rubble. Basel proved to be very brave, pulling out a camera and filming the crisis as it happened. He says that he could hear people screaming and many more bombs exploded in and around Aleppo.
When Eastern Aleppo was re-taken by the Syrian government, he also filmed himself asking people to ‘get out’ as gunshots, possibly the re-invasion taking place.
This is one of the most heroic acts of all time as no one had the courage to document what was happening in Aleppo, letting the outside world know exactly the suffering the Syrian people went through.
Basel was reunited with his family in turkey and says that he will archive all that he filmed for his children to see the kind of suffering they went through. It was hard to speak about the killings and bombings, so he let the pictures speak for themselves.