In Pictures: Children of Syria’s Civil War

With Syria’s civil war about to enter into its fourth year, the notion of a normal childhood has all but disappeared for children.

So many opportunities we tend to take for granted are lost for Syria’s youth.

According to a UN report, more than 10,000 Syrian children have died in the conflict, which is probably an underestimate. 

Syrian children have been subjected to dreadful suffering, with the government and allied militia responsible for immeasurable slaughters, the disappearance of thousands, school closures, the denial of humanitarian aid, starvation, maiming and torture.

More than three million have been displaced from their homes and communities, and another 1.1 million are now currently living as desperate refugees.

The UN discovered that government forces have also shot at children with snipers and used them as human shields during combat. If detained, those as young as six-years-old have been known to share the same cells as adults and suffer from sexual violations.

Every single day, bewildered, suffering children live in constant fear of the next time a barrel bomb will go off, an airstrike will topple their home, or when chemical warfare will kill their loved ones.

Syria has truly become hell on Earth — a place filled with piles of shrapnel and abandoned homes.

The above slideshow captures only a glimpse of the horrors currently taking place in this civil war-torn country, but clearly reveal the devastating impact of the war on children caught in the conflict.

Save the Children has a relief fund set up for Syria. The World Food Program and UNICEF do as well.

Images: Reuters