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

Video VOA EXCLUSIVE: Iraq President Vows to Fight IS 'Until They Are Killed or We Die'

In wide-ranging interview with VOA Kurdish service reporter, Fuad Masum describes conflict as new type of fight that will take time to win More

Russian Anti-Corruption Campaigner Slams Putin’s Crackdown on Dissent

In interview with VOA Alexei Navalny says he believes new law against 'undesirable NGOs' part of move to keep Russian president in power More

Video On The Scene: In Ethiopia, 'Are You a Journalist?' Is a Loaded Question

VOA's Anita Powell describes the difficulties faced by reporters in fully conveying the story in a country where people are reticent to share their true opinions 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.
Expelled from Pakistan, Afghan Refugees Return to Increased Hardshipi
X
Ayesha Tanzeem
May 28, 2015 6:48 PM
Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Expelled from Pakistan, Afghan Refugees Return to Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video Floodwaters Recede in Houston, but Rain Continues

Many parts of Texas are recovering from one of the worst natural disasters to hit the southwestern state. Heavy rains on Monday and early Tuesday caused rivers to swell in eastern and central Texas, washing away homes and killing at least 13 people. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, floodwaters are receding slowly in the country's fourth-largest city, and there likely is to be more rain in the coming days.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video US Voters Seek Answers From Presidential Candidates on IS Gains

The growth of the Islamic State militant group in Iraq and Syria comes as the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign kicks off in the Midwest state of Iowa.   As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, voters want to know how the candidates would handle recent militant gains in the Middle East.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Film Festival Looks at Indigenous Peoples, Culture Conflict

A recent Los Angeles film festival highlighted the plight of people caught between two cultures. Mike O'Sullivan has more on the the Garifuna International Film Festival, a Los Angeles forum created by a woman from Central America who wants the world to know more about her culture.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.

VOA Blogs