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Syrian Youths Continue to Amaze the World with Their Creative Potentials Despite the War

The 19th Al-Basel Exhibition for Invention and Creativity, which was opened Saturday evening within  the framework of the 61st Damascus International Fair, has been a message to the entire world that  Syrians are still able to amaze the world with their ability to create and invent despite the heinous terrorist war that has been targeting their country over the past nine years.

The exhibition which coincides with the Damascus International Fair creates an opportunity for government parties, economic and industrial sectors and investors participating in the Fair to know about the ambitious Syrian youths' innovations so that they can benefit from these projects in the country's process of reconstruction and economic development.

The exhibition, which serves as an incubator for all Syrian inventors, displays 400 inventions of 828 participants, including patent owners, students of government and public Syrian universities, basic education and high school students in addition to the commission for the Development of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises, the Agricultural Research Commission and the Syrian Inventor Association. Inventions cover mainly the medical, environmental, energy and construction fields.

Opening the exhibition, Higher Education Minister Bassam Ibrahim vowed more government support for researchers and inventors and expressed the government readiness to adopt their applicable and valuable creative projects to serve the economic, industrial and agricultural development in the country, particularly as Syria have started an all out reconstruction process.

All the participants, whom we met, called on state institutions and ministries as well as the concerned industrial and economic sides to focus more on the inventions so that they can be well-invested in the coming era.

Syriatimes e-newspaper interviewed some participants to speak about their inventions.

Asef Hasan, an inventor with 24 patents in different domains, told us that he is displaying a medical invention which aims at treating pediatric foot deformities, which is a globally intractable medical case. The invention is a device with the function of lengthening the Achilles Tendon without Surgery.

According to Hasan, his invention is the first of its kind in the world because the process of lengthening the Achilles Tendon has never been  done before without a surgical intervention.
"Surgeries of lengthening the Achilles Tendon have proven to be unsuccessful in most cases so we invented this device to provide a solution," Hasan said.

Another medical invention is presented by a group of Biomedical Engineering students at Tishreen university in Lattakia Ali Mohammad al-Hassoun al-Bakeer, Sam Karafallah and Abdulla Ahmad Qaddour.

Talking to Syriatimes about the invention, al-Bakeer said it is an electronic artificial limb that replaces an amputated hand palm and below-elbow or above-elbow amputated arm. It is water-resistant, lightweight and easy to install.

"Injured people can install and take off the artificial limb easily without the help of others. We designed this limb to help injured people  do basic functions of the hand." He said, noting that the group has received support from the First Lady, Mrs. Asma al-Assad and that their invention has become a product which is being sold at a low price taking into consideration the weak purchasing ability of citizens.

"An electronic limb is sold in the international market at about 3-4 million Syrian pounds while we sell it at only 100.000 SYP." he clarified.

He went on to say that this year the group managed to install 12 limbs for some people, including wounded soldiers and members of the national defense forces who lost some of their body parts in the fight against terrorism.

Two engineers, Razan Bayazid and Riham Haseera, who graduated from the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering of Aleppo University, also presented an invention based on benefitting from rubbles and damaged tires in producing a material that can be used in manufacturing walls. The goal is to get rid of the huge amount of rubbles and invalid tires in a useful way, they said.

The project, which took a yearlong work,  is promising particularly as the country is launching a comprehensive reconstruction process. The new wall will be competitive with traditional concrete walls for being eco-friendly and resistant to sounds, moisture and heat.

The committee of scientific research will study the inventions and choose the top three creative works. The names of the winners will be announced on Wednesday and their honoring ceremony will be held on Thursday.

Al-Basel exhibition is organized by the Ministry of Internal Trade and Consumer Protection in cooperation with the Higher Commission for Scientific Research, the Syrian Inventors Association and the Excellence and Creativity Agency.

Interviewed By Hamda Mustafa

Photos by Mahfouz Abou Hadier