Vatican News
Internally displaced children look out from a tent in Azaz Internally displaced children look out from a tent in Azaz 

Syria: displaced children caught between violence and freezing cold

Over half a million children have been displaced because of the violence and harsh winter weather in northwest Syria.

By Vatican News

A report, made public on Tuesday by UNICEF, gives details of how over 500,000 children have had to flee their homes in northwest Syria both because of intensified violence in the area, and due to freezing cold weather conditions.

Ten of thousands of these children are now living in tents, and many in the open air, exposed to the cold and rain. As the weather continues to get colder in the region, organizations like UNICEF are trying to raise awareness of the plight of these children, and all those who are internally displaced without adequate protection against the elements.

Last winter, at least 130 children died on their way to, or soon after arriving at, the Al Hol refugee camp in northwest Syria. 77 children have been killed or injured since the beginning of this year alone, as a result of an escalation in the violence and fighting in the area.

UNICEF Executive Director, Henrietta Fore, has described the situation as “untenable, even by Syria’s grim standards”. “Children and families are caught between the violence, the biting cold, the lack of food and the desperate living conditions”, she says. “

“Such abject disregard for the safety and wellbeing of children and families is beyond the pale and must not go on.” 

18 February 2020, 14:51