UN monitors have arrived in Syria to oversee a shaky ceasefire but the guns have not fallen silent and people are fearful, as the BBC's Ian Pannell observed when he secretly visited the northern province of Idlib.
Ahmed Al-Aboud's body bears the scars of the struggle for change in Syria.
He joined the Free Syrian Army but was detained at a checkpoint in Saraqib, Idlib province, three months ago. He says the government forces that captured him started by beating him, then they shot him and finally they set fire to his bleeding body and left him for dead.
His face, body and arms are disfigured and he pulled his robe to one side to show two clear bullet marks.
That he is alive is remarkable but we met the father of eight at a public protest in an area where government forces had been active just a few days ago.
"I am not afraid, I will sacrifice my soul and my life to get ride of [Syrian President] Bashar Al Assad," he says.
His defiance is typical of the people we have met in Idlib.
That does not mean people are not afraid.