During the Arab Spring in 2011, the economy in Syria was experiencing high unemployment rates, corruption and political repression. Protesters demanded that long-time Syrian leader, Bashar al-Assad, step down, but the protests were ineffective. Since 2011, the armed resistance against the regime has been growing constantly and violence has been increasing. By the summer of 2012, the fighting had spread to Syria’s largest city, Aleppo. Since the beginning of the Syrian revolution, there have been more than 115 thousand civilian casualties and almost 10 percent of all deaths in Syria are caused by terrorist attacks. Due to the high number of casualties, millions of people have fled Syria and population growth rates, which seemed to stabilize around 2007, have declined dramatically since then and even slumped into the red.
Despite the unrest in Syria being a result of the poor economic situation, the GDP has grown significantly from 2001 until 2010. However, unemployment rates in Syria have remained exceedingly high. In comparison to other nations in the Middle East, Syria has one of the highest unemployment rates registered. All in all, the Syrian population and economy are still suffering greatly under the war and its consequences, causing many Syrians to leave their home permanently.