Farmers in Shehba sell their cattle due to the embargo and shrinking grazing land

People in the northern Syrian canton of Shehba are forced to sell their cattle due to the Damascus government's embargo and shrinking grazing land.

Cultivated areas and grazing lands have shrunk due to decreased rainfall in North-East Syria. As a result, people have started to sell their animals in livestock markets. Moreover, the costs of animal husbandry have increased remarkably.

Animal feed, barley and medicines for animals have become very expensive due to the Damascus government’s embargo on the region, in place for five years.

People involved in stockbreeding are forced to sell some of their cattle as they buy barley and fodder to take care of the rest.

One kilo of animal feed in Shehba costs 35 thousand Syrian liras. Fodder costs 1,500 liras and the prices of medicines required for animal husbandry have doubled due to the embargo.

Speaking to ANHA, Mihemed Xemisî said: "Due to the increase in animal feed prices, we have to sell our sheep so as to buy feed.”

Another citizen who owns 20 sheep stated that most of the animal owners made a living from cattle farming, but they had to sell their cattle due to high feed prices. He said: “Animal husbandry has gone into a decline, which is negatively impacting the local economy.”

Ebdurehman Mihemed, who owns sheep, said: "I make my living by selling milk, but I have to sell the sheep because the price of animal feed is high, and it doesn't rain.”