Are the children in Syria exempted from enjoying their basic rights?
Secretary General’s Statement on the Situation of Children in Syria;
A Call to Action
18th September 2013
The principles shared by members of the Global Network of Religions for Children demand an expression of deep concern about the situation children face in Syria.
The crisis which began in March 2011 inspired by other popular peaceful demonstrations in the Arab world was met with violent crackdown. Children have since suffered most in this war.
The Syrian war has violated all the rights of children in all aspects – the right to life, the right to be with family and community, the right to health and basic needs and the fundamental right to be nurtured and protected.
Today, the Syrian children are crying out for help.
A crisis report released by UNICEF on Syrian children in March 2013 indicates that of the four (4) million people affected by the war, two (2) million are children. A majority of the refugees are children. Forty (40) per cent of those killed or maimed are children. This is deplorable. It is unacceptable that this is happening to children, with no end to their suffering in sight as the combatants continue to harden their positions about the other.
The efforts by many international organizations across the world, and those who have attempted to work to alleviate the suffering of Syrians from this brutal war, are appreciated. I applaud the recent progress toward a non-violent solution to the problem of chemical weapons in Syria. But that is only one form of violence being employed against the children of Syria. I appeal to all the members of the international community to overcome political differences and agree on peaceful means of bringing an end to the conflict and alleviating the suffering of all Syrians, especially the children.
I appeal to all groups involved in the fighting, government or otherwise, to protect Syria’s children, and leave them out of this war.
I appeal to the United Nations, the governments currently engaged in finding an end to the war in Syria to expeditiously re-engage, and without inflaming the already volatile environment in that country.
Lastly, I call upon all people of faith and goodwill to pray that the suffering of the people of Syria, especially the children, is soon relieved.
Mustafa Y. Ali, Ph.D.
Global Network of Religions for Children