Syrian Conflict Has Damaging Impact on Children: UNICEF

Actor Liam Neeson Meets Syrian Children in Jordan
Actor Liam Neeson Meets Syrian Children in Jordan

Six and a half years of war in Syria has inflicted untold suffering on the country’s children, a senior United Nations official said Friday, urging parties to the conflict to stop the violence and live up to their legal obligations to children.

“The impact of war on children across Syria is staggering,” said Fran Equiza, the UN Children’s Fund’s (UNICEF) Representative in Syria.

According to a UN report, ongoing and heavy fighting has displaced thousands of families from Raqqa city and Deir-ez-Zor.

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“I have just completed a visit to the camps in Areesha, Ein Issa and Mabrouka where I met with displaced children and oversaw UNICEF’s lifesaving efforts on the ground,” said Ms. Equiza.

“I am overwhelmed by the profoundly traumatising experiences these children have been through. They have endured brutal violence, lost friends and family members,” she elaborated, adding “They are terrified, yet hopeful.”

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According to reports UNICEF is receiving from inside Raqqa city, several thousand children continue to be trapped – caught in the direct line of fire.

With no access for humanitarian agencies, the city is completely cut off from lifesaving assistance.

As the conflict further intensifies, children and families have little or no safe water, while food supplies are running out fast. Moreover, trapped children increasingly risk death and injury.

Courtesy: UN, Photo courtesy: UNICEF

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Rakesh Raman