Al-Fu'ah

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Al-Fu'ah
الفوعة
Village
Al-Fu'ah is located in Syria
Al-Fu'ah
Al-Fu'ah
Coordinates: 35°58′54″N 36°42′6″E / 35.98167°N 36.70167°E / 35.98167; 36.70167
Country  Syria
Governorate Idlib
District Idlib
Subdistrict Binnish
Population (2004)[1]
 • Total 10,264
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
 • Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3)

Al-Fu'ah (Arabic: الفوعة‎, also spelled al-Fouaa and al-Fo'ua) is a town in northern Syria, administratively part of the Idlib Governorate, located northeast of Idlib. Nearby localities include Kafriya to the west, Maarrat Misrin to the northwest, Zardana to the north, Taftanaz to the northeast, Ta'um to the east and Binnish and Sarmin to the south. The plain surrounding al-Fu'ah is well known for growing olives and figs.[2]

According to the Syria Central Bureau of Statistics, the town had a population of 10,264 in the 2004 census.[1] The inhabitants are predominantly Shia Muslims.[3][4]

History[edit]

Medieval period[edit]

During the Crusades, the town was a barrier fortress of the Principality of Antioch.[5] However, after the capture of Baldwin II of Edessa, the inhabitants of al-Fu'ah and nearby Maarrat Misrin and Sarmin revolted against their Crusader rulers in 1104, inflicting heavy casualties against their troops.[6] The town was later captured by Fakhr al-Mulk Radwan in 1104.[5] Aq Sunqur of Mosul occupied al-Fu'a, along with Sarmin, in 1126.[6]

Al-Fu'ah was visited by Syrian geographer Yaqut al-Hamawi in the early 13th-century, during Ayyubid rule. He noted that it was a "large village in the neighborhood of Halab. From it the convent called Dair Fu'ah takes its name."[7]

In the late 13th-century, the town was mentioned by Syrian geographer Abu'l-Fida, who described the town as a celebrated place in the plain of Aleppo. He noted that, "on this plain are grown quantities of olive, fig and other trees."[8]

Syrian uprising[edit]

While most towns in the Idlib Governorate are in the control of anti-government rebels, al-Fu'ah and the nearby town of Kafriya constitute an isolated pro-state enclave.[3] According to the Syrian Center for Documentation, in April 2012 rebels kidnapped eleven members of the Governmental Scientific Research Center in al-Fu'ah.[9] In July 2012 a rebel unit kidnapped three Shia Muslim civilians from the town for the stated purpose of exchanging them for anti-aircraft weaponry. In response, some of al-Fu'ah's residents kidnapped 32 Sunni Muslims from nearby Taftanaz, Saraqib and Binnish. After two weeks of negotiations, all captives were safely released.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b General Census of Population and Housing 2004. Syria Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS). Idlib Governorate. (Arabic)
  2. ^ Azoo, 1916, p. 209.
  3. ^ a b Al-Khalidi, Suleiman. Syrian rebels say gain ground as grip of army weakens. Reuters. 2012-07-27.
  4. ^ a b Abouzeid, Rania. Going Rogue: Bandits and Criminal Gangs Threaten Syria’s Rebellion. TIME. 2012-07-30.
  5. ^ a b Setton; Baldwin, ed., 2006, p. 390.
  6. ^ a b Houtsma, 1987, p. 58.
  7. ^ le Strange, 1890, p. 440.
  8. ^ le Strange, 1890, p. 441.
  9. ^ April 2012-04-29, Syrian Crisis Updated. Syrian Center for Documentation. Voltaire Network. 2012-04-29.

Bibliography[edit]