nataliasancha Natalia Sancha

Independent journalist and photographer in love with the Middle East. Based in Lebanon since 2008 and focusing on Syria.

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Migrants in Lesbos
Lesbos
By Natalia Sancha
18 Apr 2016

The Greek island of Lesbos witnessed an unprecedented spike in refugee arrivals in the summer of 2015 with an average of 2,000 people landing per day, overwhelming the limited infrastructure of the island. Since January of 2015, some 156,000 migrants have reached Greek’s coasts by crossing with inflatable boats from Turkey. Around 80% of the arrivals are of Afghan and Syrian nationality, and half of them are under the age of 18.

The perilous journey in such fragile boats were exposing migrants’ lives while smugglers, overwhelm by the numbers, were fitting up to 65 persons in boats with a maximum capacity of 15 persons. Smugglers charge an average of 1,000 euros for one-hour boat trip. Fleeing their war-torn countries, migrants try to reach northern Europe (mainly Germany and Sweden). Once in Athens, they will again resort to smugglers to cross by foot, train and buses the borders of Macedonia, Serbia, Hungary and Austria.

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Syrian Army in al-Qaryatain
Al-Qaryatain
By Natalia Sancha
04 Apr 2016

Photos show Syrian government forces and allied militias, like the Syrian Social Nationalist Party (SSNP), in the recaptured town of al-Qaryatain on April 4, 2016 following clashes with Islamic State (ISIS) fighters. The town, which lies in central Syria and close to the city of Homs, was under ISIS control for eight months.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
01 Apr 2016

Syrian Army soldiers recovered the ancient ruins and city of Palmyra from Islamic State (ISIS) fighters on March 27th, 2016 following three weeks of violent clashes. Government forces proceeded to fortify their presence in the city and its famous ruins after Russian sappers cleared the area with landmines planted by ISIS.

Media created

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Migrants in Lesbos 25
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

Tourists witness the arrival of migrants after they arrive to the Greek island of Lesbos, enduring a perilous journey on a small boat from Turkey with 50 people onboard.

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Migrants in Lesbos 22
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

Migrants celebrate their safe arrival onboard a small boat to the Greek island of Lesbos. They were among a group of 50 migrants who have endured a perilous journey arrived from Turkey to reach Skala Sikamias, in Lesbos.

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Migrants in Lesbos 19
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

Life jackets are left behind after migrants make the journey in the sea and reach the Greek island of Lesbos.

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Migrants in Lesbos 20
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

A kid looks at the life jackets floating in the sea upon his arrival. A small inflatable boat with around 50 migrants onboard reached the coast of Skala Sikamias beach, in the Greek island of Lesbos, after crossing the 14 kilometers that separates them from Turkey's shores.

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Migrants in Lesbos 21
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

A small inflatable boat with around 50 migrants onboard reaches the coast of Skala Sikamias beach, in the Greek island of Lesbos, after crossing the 14 kilometers that separates them from Turkey's shores.

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Migrants in Lesbos 17
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
11 Aug 2015

A young Syrian tries to recover after their small boat sunk in the Aegean Sea between Turkey and Greece. She is hosted by locals at an informal camp in Movilos. Some 54 Syrian migrants were rescued by the Greek Coast Guard's patrol.

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Migrants in Lesbos 18
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

Migrants celebrate their safe arrival onboard a small boat to the Greek island of Lesbos. They were among a group of 50 migrants who have endured a perilous journey arrived from Turkey to reach Skala Sikamias, in Lesbos.

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Migrants in Lesbos 15
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

The small inflatable boat with around 50 migrants onboard reached the coast of Skala Sikamias beach, in Lesbos, after crossing the 14 kilometers that separates the island from Turkey's shores.

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Migrants in Lesbos 16
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

The small inflatable boat with around 50 migrants onboard reached the coast of Skala Sikamias beach, in Lesbos, after crossing the 14 kilometers that separates the island from Turkey's shores.

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Migrants in Lesbos 14
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

A migrant jumps from a small boat after arriving to Greece's Lesbos island. The small inflatable boat with around 50 migrants onboard reached the coast of Skala Sikamias beach, in Lesbos, after crossing the 14 kilometers that separates the island from Turkey's shores.

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Migrants in Lesbos 12
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

Ahmed, from Aleppo, celebrates his arrival to Greek's coast after one year trying to leave Syria's war-torn city. Many migrants celebrated their safe arrival onboard small inflatable boats in perilous journeys. Ahmed was among a group of 50 migrants who arrived from Turkey on small boat in Skala Sikamias, in Lesbos.

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Migrants in Lesbos 13
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

Greeck coastal police escorts two small boats coming from Turkey with around 50 migrants each to Skala Sikamias, in the Greek island of Lesbos.

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Migrants in Lesbos 10
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

Locals and tourists provide water to a woman who fainted. She was among a group of migrants who arrived from Turkey on small boat to Skala Sikamias, in the Greek island of Lesbos.

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Migrants in Lesbos 11
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

A migrant woman fainted soon after arriving in Skala Sikamias, in the Greek island of Lesbos. She was among a group of migrants who arrived from Turkey on small boat.

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Migrants in Lesbos 08
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

A small inflatable boat with around 50 migrants onboard reaches the coast of Skala Sikamias beach at the Greek island of Lesbos, after crossing the 14 kilometers that separates them from Turkey's shores.

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Migrants in Lesbos 09
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

A group of migrants rest after arriving from Turkey on small boat to Skala Sikamias, in the Greek island of Lesbos.

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Migrants in Lesbos 06
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

Hundreds of migrants walk for up to three days from the northern villages of Lesbos Island to reach Mitilini and register at the port police station.

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Migrants in Lesbos 07
Lesbos, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
12 Aug 2015

A small inflatable boat with around 50 migrants onboard reaches the coast of Skala Sikamias beach at the Greek island of Lesbos, after crossing the 14 kilometers that separates them from Turkey's shores.

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Migrants in Lesbos 04
Athens, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
10 Aug 2015

A Hazara family from Ghazni, Afghanistan, sleeps at a public park in Athens. Up to 400 Afghan migrants sleep at Perioun Tou Arios park in Athens, awaiting to continue their trip to northern Europe.

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Migrants in Lesbos 05
Athens, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
10 Aug 2015

Young Greek students bring water and food for migrants. Up to 400 Afghan migrants sleep at Perioun Tou Arios park in Athens, awaiting to continue their trip to northern Europe.

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Migrants in Lesbos 03
Athens, Greece
By Natalia Sancha
10 Aug 2015

A Greek homeless and an Afghan migrant choose clothes provided by Greek volunteers. Up to 400 Afghan migrants sleep at Perioun Tou Arios park in Athens, awaiting to continue their trip to northern Europe.

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Syrian Army in al-Qaryatain 07
Al-Qaryatain
By Natalia Sancha
04 Apr 2016

A group of Syrian soldiers rest after two days of fighting against Islamic State militants in al-Qaryatain. The Syrian Army and its allied militias recaptured the village from ISIS on last Sunday night, April 3, 2016 following three months of fighting.

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Syrian Army in al-Qaryatain 08
Al-Qaryatain
By Natalia Sancha
04 Apr 2016

Syrian soldiers observe the destruction in a building in al-Qaryatain. The Syrian Army and its allied militias recaptured the village from ISIS on April 3, 2016 following three months of fighting.

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Syrian Army in al-Qaryatain 05
Al-Qaryatain
By Natalia Sancha
04 Apr 2016

A soldier awaits with his unit to enter al-Qaryatain following the recapture of the town by the Syrian Army. The village was under Islamic State control for eight months, which ended on April 3, 2016 after government forces launched a two-day offensive in coordination with allied militias.

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Syrian Army in al-Qaryatain 06
Al-Qaryatain
By Natalia Sancha
04 Apr 2016

Syrian soldiers burn an Islamic States flag found at al-Qaryatain village. The Syrian Army and its allied militias recaptured the village from ISIS on April 3, 2016 following three months of fighting.

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Syrian Army in al-Qaryatain 03
Al-Qaryatain
By Natalia Sancha
04 Apr 2016

Syrian soldiers walk through al-Qaryatain village as they pass by a wall with graffiti written in Arabic that can be read: "€œThe Islamic State, Lasting and Expanding"€. The Syrian Army and its allied militias recaptured the village from ISIS on last Sunday night, April 3, 2016 following three months of fighting.

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Syrian Army in al-Qaryatain 04
Al-Qaryatain
By Natalia Sancha
04 Apr 2016

Two Syrian soldiers rest in the village of al-Qaryatain after three months of fighting with Islamic State fighters. Inhabitants have fled and the houses have suffered serious damage during the combats. The Syrian Army finally recaptured the village on April 3, 2016 after a two-day offensive in coordination with allied militias.

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Syrian Army in al-Qaryatain 01
Al-Qaryatain
By Natalia Sancha
04 Apr 2016

Oum Ali secures the center of Al-Qaryatain fighting with a group from the Syrian Social Nationalist Party (SSNP). The Syrian Army and its allied militias recaptured the village from ISIS on April 3, 2016 following three months of fighting.

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Syrian Army in al-Qaryatain 02
Al-Qaryatain
By Natalia Sancha
04 Apr 2016

A private house in Al-Qaryatain damaged by the fighting between Islamic State fighters and Syrian government forces. The Syrian Army and its allied militias recaptured the village from ISIS on April 3, 2016 following three months of fighting.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 06
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
01 Apr 2016

View over Palmyra ruins and the castle. The Syrian Army recovered Palmyra from ISIS on March 27th, 2016 after three weeks of violent clashes.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 04
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
01 Apr 2016

A Syrian Army soldier poses inside Palmyra's ancient roman theater. The 2,000 year-old theater has survived the 10 month occupation of the site by ISIS. At least 24 civilians and 70 soldiers where publicly executed by ISIS at its stage. The Syrian Army recovered Palmyra from ISIS on March 27th, 2016 after three weeks of violent clashes.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 28
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
01 Apr 2016

A group of Syrian Army soldiers enter Palmyra city after it was under ISIS control for the past 10 months. Russian sappers working inside the city detonated thousands of mines planted by ISIS. A mass grave was found inside the city with 40 bodies during the de-mining work. The Syrian Army recovered Palmyra from ISIS on March 27th, 2016 after three weeks of violent clashes.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 26
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
02 Apr 2016

Najla A., a displaced from Tadmur/Palmyra and mother of seven at her temporary refuge in Baba Amr neighborhood of Homs. They fled Palmyra in June 2016 when her sister was executed by ISIS after refusing to comply with the Califate's rules. The Syrian Army recovered Palmyra from ISIS on March 27th, 2016 after three weeks of violent clashes.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 27
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
02 Apr 2016

Najla A., a displaced from Tadmur/Palmyra and mother of seven at her temporary refuge in Baba Amr neighborhood of Homs. They fled Palmyra in June 2016 when her sister was executed by ISIS after refusing to comply with the Califate's rules. The Syrian Army recovered Palmyra from ISIS on March 27th after three weeks of violent clashes.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 24
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
01 Apr 2016

Palmyra's city entrance appears damaged after heavy fighting between the Syrian Army and ISIS. Government forces recovered Palmyra from ISIS on March 27th, 2016 after three weeks of violent clashes.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 25
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
01 Apr 2016

A Syrian Army soldier celebrates the recovery of Palmyra from ISIS fighters. Government forces recovered Palmyra from ISIS on March 27th, 2016 after three weeks of violent clashes.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 22
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
01 Apr 2016

A traffic sign was damaged by combats between the Syrian Army and ISIS. Behind it, PalmyraÕs castle can be seen as well as a column of smoke rising after Russian sappers detonated a mine planted by ISIS. The Syrian Army recovered Palmyra from ISIS on March 27th, 2016.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 23
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
01 Apr 2016

A Syrian Army soldier holds an ISIS flag found at PalmyraÕs city. The Syrian Army recovered Palmyra from ISIS on March 27th, 2016 after three weeks of violent clashes.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 19
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
01 Apr 2016

A group of Syrian Army soldiers celebrate the recovery of Palmyra from ISIS fighters. Government forces recovered Palmyra from ISIS on March 27th, 2016.

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Syrian Army in Palmyra 20
Palmyra
By Natalia Sancha
01 Apr 2016

A Syrian Army officer points to the main Palmyra roundabout where Khaled Asaad, a 81 year-old Syrian archaeologist and the head of antiquities for the ancient city of Palmyra, was beheaded by ISIS in August 18th, 2015. ISIS ensign remains over the fountain. A Syrian flag marks the recovery of the city by the Syrian Army on March 27th, 2016.