The winds of war blowing through the region are also being felt in Syria, as the country begins checks of its public bomb shelters for the first time since 1973.
Syrian media outlets reported Wednesday that while residents of towns on the border with Israel are independently looking after themselves and shelters, the 'civil guard' began checking the state of bomb shelters in Damascus.
A senior member or the civil guard in Damascus said the body was "working to make sure the shelters were in good shape as a step to prepare for any future development. This is especially true for shelters who have over the years turned into stores, clubs, and even homes."
"Imagine if God forbid a war broke out and they tried to enter here, they would probably prevent it," said Abu Majdi, a senior civil guard member, while pointing at a home in Damascus built in a former shelter.
'We'd be kicked out'
"They would say this was private property and kick us out of here. The law would back up the owners, and indeed this is their house," he said.
"This was a public bomb shelter in a building in which we lived," said Mona, a resident of the Bab Shraki neighborhood in Damascus.
"In the days of the October War (The Yom Kippur War – R.N) all of the people would go down here to protect themselves," she said.
This shelter has also been renovated and Mona does not know where to go in case of an emergency. "This shelter has been sold and bought and we don't even know by who. Once it was open a store for cellular phone equipment, afterwards as a warehouse, and later as a home, before finally becoming a barber shop. The problem is that if it is private property we have no right to enter it in any situation."
The Syrian regime has set up a committee to look into the state of bomb shelters in various areas in Damascus and to prepare them "for any eventually."
Despite the situation on the ground, the head of Damascus' governor's bureau said the public bomb shelters in Damascus were ready and would be used during a time of war.