The three-year civil war in Syria reached a grim milestone. According to the United Nations agency for refugees,there are now one million Syrian children who have been displaced in the on-going conflict.
This news comes as the UN investigates claims that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons against rebels.
"They began to bomb our house. We couldn't stay there any longer, we were crying a lot. Afterward we came here.”
Eight-year-old, Aya and her family fled to tiny Lebanon, and are now dependent on aid agencies to survive. The United Nations says that of the one million children refugees, nearly three fourths of them are under 11 years old.
Their forced exodus means interruptions to their education and welfare, as well as uncertainty over their immediate and long-term futures. Often times, these children and their families leave the comforts of their own home and face poor conditions in refugee camps.
"The children get fevers from the dirt and bacteria. They are always scratching.”
As the war continues, the number of refugees increases, straining already tight resources in neighboring countries like Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey and Iraq.
The UN says over the past few months, Syrian refugees have taken even greater risks to escape the violence, making dangerous trips to places like Italy.
They called on both sides fighting in Syria to stop targeting civilians, and to reach a peaceful solution to the conflict. They also stressed the need for more funding to care for the one million children and their families who have fled the war.