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Four years of death and destruction in Syria

2015-03-14

Between 21 and 66 days. That's how long the journal of Science says it takes to form a habit. The war in Syria has lasted more 1,460 days and has become, unfortunately, part of the routine. The war is no longer the focus global attention. It is beginning to stay off the front pages of the international press. But death and destruction remain a reality for the Syrians who have remained. For those who have fled, poverty has become part of daily life. The list of needs is endless.

AFSHAN KHAN
UNICEF
"I think, four years into this crisis, what we really need to see is investments in the future of children; so restoration of basic social services, whether it's health, whether it's water and sanitation, whether it's education. I think a chance and a hope for the future, so helping children rebuild their dreams and, more than anything, we need a solution to this crisis.”

The situation is especially hard for children who have never known a normal life. They are confused. UNICEF has called for immediate help for more than 5.5 million people.

MARIA CALIVIS
UNICEF 
"They have witnessed some unspeakable brutality and violence and they have missed out on so many things, including school, which is critical, and leisure, building friendships.”

The international community has undertaken timid attempts to pacify the country. Multiple factions are fighting each other while also battling the government of Bashar al-Assad.

Pope Francis has continued to make appeals for peace. He even called a special vigil to pray for Syria.

POPE FRANCIS 
September 7, 2013
"Forgiveness, dialogue, reconciliation. These are the words of peace, in the beloved Syrian nation, in the Middle East, worldwide.”

In 2013, more than 100,000 people prayed for peace in Syria in St. Peter's Square. Their numbers matched the war's death toll at the time.

Now, four years into the conflict, more than 200,000 people have been killed. Further, 7.6 million are refugees and 12 million need emergency humanitarian aid.  The numbers increase as bombs continue to drop.


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