A child walking past the debris of a destroyed building in Syria. Photo credit: Anadolu
In statistics released on the International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression, a human rights watchdog said it has recorded the death of 252 Palestinian refugee children in war-torn Syria.
The International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression is a United Nations observance each 4 June. It was established on 19 August 1982.
Originally focused on victims of the 1982 Lebanon War, its purpose expanded to "acknowledge the pain suffered by children throughout the world who are the victims of physical, mental and emotional abuse. This day affirms the UN's commitment to protect the rights of children.
The London-based Action Group for Palestinians of Syria (AGPS) said as many as 252 Palestinian children died of war-related incidents in Syria.
The list of Palestinian victims includes 70 children who died due to the blockade imposed by the Syrian government forces and armed allies on Yarmouk camp for Palestinian refugees, south of Damascus.
AGPS also documented the secret incarceration of 48 Palestinian minors in Syrian government prisons, where two children died under torture.
Sworn affidavits by ex-detainees confirmed the presence of toddlers swung in their moms’ arms in Syrian prisons and whose fates have remained shrouded in mystery.
Thousands of children have gone orphaned after they lost one or both of their parents in the deadly warfare.
The conflict in Syria has had traumatic fallouts on Palestinian refugee children in and outside of Syria. Post-traumatic stress disorders, mental psychosis, sleeplessness and nightmares, eating disorders, and intense fear have all been reported among Palestinian children from Syria.
AGPS has renewed its calls to the international community, human rights institutions, UNICEF, UNRWA, and all concerned bodies to work on protecting Palestinian children in embattled zones.