News / Middle East

UN: Syria War Has Caused One Million Child Refugees

Syria War Has Devastating Impact on Childreni
X
August 23, 2013 11:33 PM
Syria's civil war is having a devastating impact on children, with child refugees now numbering one million. The United Nations refugee agency and the U.N. Children's Fund [UNICEF] released that new figure on Friday. VOA's Alex Villarreal reports the trauma does not end at the border for children forced to flee the fighting.
Syria War Has Devastating Impact on Children
Lisa Schlein
The United Nations reports one million Syrian children are refugees from conflict in their country.

Two U.N. agencies say Syria’s war, which is well into its third year, is the most serious crisis facing children today. They say children make up half of all the Syrian refugees who have fled to neighboring countries and increasingly to North Africa and Europe.

U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres said the children arrive in countries of asylum traumatized, depressed and angry.
 
“If one looks at the number of refugee children, if one adds about 2 million children that are internally displaced inside Syria and the millions that are trapped in their villages, in their cities in the middle of a war, we can really talk of the enormous risk of Syria facing the problem of a lost generation,” said Guterres.

Map showing Syrian refugee populations.Map showing Syrian refugee populations.
x
Map showing Syrian refugee populations.
Map showing Syrian refugee populations.
Latest U.N. figures show three quarters of the child refugees are under the age of 11. The U.N. agencies report that nearly 167,000 refugee children have received psychological counseling. But many others that need such help are not getting it.

UNICEF Deputy Executive Director Yoka Brandt said the children's crisis is escalating. One year ago, there were 70,000 Syrian refugee children, compared to the current number of one million.

“Children that have to run away from horror and are traumatized, children being denied a normal childhood and then face the risk, serious protection risks - sexual exploitation, child labor, early marriage. But also children that are robbed of their future because they are missing out on their third year in school, and increasingly children also becoming angry and frustrated at their plight,” said Brandt.

The U.N. says some of the refugee children have been recruited as child soldiers at a camp in Jordan and at camps in Iraq. They say more than 3,500 children in Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq have crossed from Syria unaccompanied or separated from their families.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Richard from: North Carolina, USA
August 23, 2013 9:55 PM
The attacks involved 5 areas and were immediately followed by Syrian army artillery and air attacks, with ground assaults the next day. Clearly, Syria did' this. Why? Remember two weeks ago the rebels took a dozen villages in the Alawite homeland, right by Assad's home town. Syria had to shift troops from other areas to drive them out. If Syria can't even defend their dictator's home province they are clearly short of troops. City fighting is very costly, just look at Stalingrad. They were hoping to reduce their casualties. Casualties they can no longer afford. I suppose Assad figured that if Obama attacked it would be symbolic - the chemical weapons stores. I think he's probably right. What I think we can learn from this is that casualties are Syria's weakness.

by: mike king from: california
August 23, 2013 9:05 PM
Few in the mid east denounce the bombers, killer of children and exploiters who use innocence to carry destructive devices. Now recruited kids for their armies will be used for cannon fodder and to find mines in mine fields. Until the world denounces the actions of a few seeking power and glory for causes that died centuries ago and moves against them there will be no peace.
Smart people with ignorant causes will be buried in the pile of historical nothingness that accompanies empty revenge. Get smart and bring your countries up from the sands of time instead of destroying the future of your own children and releasing hell fire on your region. You blame the US and Israel.
What's your excuse when the US doesn't want or need your oil? Israel will never lay down to people who fire rockets at them, kill innocents, and try to steal land bought and paid for by blood, hard work, and cash. Attack Israel and many Christians will take up the cause and fight against you.

by: Hadwa Al Tuz from: Egypt
August 23, 2013 1:54 PM
where are the Arab nations who are so eager to condemn the US and Israel...???
In Response

by: Dexter Joseph Diaz from: Qatar
August 23, 2013 5:18 PM
I may not care about little things in life, I am a bad person, but I can't imagine how would anyone, would live knowing , that what they just did, ended the lives of all those innocent Children, it may not be a holocaust, but It will be . . Where are those so Called American Freedom Fighter Conflict Intermediar when you need them ?
In Response

by: Hasbara Murdererberg from: Toronto
August 23, 2013 5:08 PM
The Arab nations are under Israeli supported dictatorships being murdered by the mercenary armies of US and Israel.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs