Syrian crisis: What you need to know
What is happening in the Syrian Arab Republic?
After more than eight years of conflict, the Syrian crisis continues to have a huge impact on children inside Syria, across the region and beyond. Every Syrian child has been impacted by the violence, displacement, severed family ties and lack of access to vital services. This has had a huge psychological impact on children.
In early October 2019, an escalation of violence in the northeast of the country displaced tens of thousands of children, with thousands of people fleeing to neighbouring Iraq. The hostilities also damaged or caused the closure of critical basic services including schools, health and water facilities.
The physical devastation in Syria is massive, with schools, hospitals and water treatment facilities destroyed. Meanwhile, an estimated 2.6 million children remain displaced inside Syria, while some 2.5 million children are living as refugees, in neighbouring countries. The scale, severity and complexity of the humanitarian needs remain extensive.
How have children been affected?
The Syrian crisis remains first and foremost a protection crisis: 2018 was the deadliest single year for children since the start of the war. Grave violations of children’s rights – recruitment, abductions, killing and maiming continue unabated. Unexploded ordnance is a deadly threat for millions of Syrian children, while around 5 million children still require some form of humanitarian assistance, including nearly half a million in hard-to-reach areas.
What is UNICEF doing to help children in the Syrian crisis?
UNICEF and partners are on the ground in Syria and across the region working to protect children, to help them cope with the impact of conflict and to resume their childhoods. This includes improving access to education and psychosocial support services to help children and caregivers to recover from trauma and to restore a sense of normalcy, as well as delivering critical humanitarian assistance in hard-to-reach areas. Read more about UNICEF’s work and results in the country.
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Syrian crisis snapshot
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What UNICEF is doing in Syria
UNICEF and partners are on the ground in Syria and across the region working to protect children, to help them cope with the impact of conflict and to resume their childhoods. This includes improving access to education and psychosocial support services to help children and caregivers to recover from trauma and to restore a sense of normalcy.
UNICEF delivers critical humanitarian assistance, such as vaccines and other health and nutrition items across the country, including accessing hard-to-reach areas. Meanwhile, UNICEF and partners are improving school facilities, training teachers and repairing water and sanitation facilities.