Surviving as a child in the longest military siege in modern history

15-year-old Muhammad Najem from Eastern Ghouta (Twitter: @muhammadnajem20)

The Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta, Syria is home to more than 350,000 people. Once renowned for its fertile soils and rich agricultural production, Eastern Ghouta is now better known for the Assad regime’s brutal Sarin attack in August 2013, killing more than 1,500 people, and for being home to the longest military siege in modern history. As of February 2018, Eastern Ghouta has been besieged by forces loyal to Syrian president Bashar al-Assad for four years and 10 months, a full year longer than the siege of Sarajevo.


During that time Eastern Ghouta has suffered from chemical weapons attacks and intense bombardment at the hands of pro-regime forces, with hundreds killed in the first few days of February alone. Amnesty International have condemned the Syrian government and its allies, saying that its ‘surrender or starve‘ policy amounts to a crime against humanity.


Half of Eastern Ghouta’s population are estimated to be children according to UNICEF. A recent survey of 27 locations in East Ghouta conducted in November 2017 has found that the proportion of children under five years old suffering from acute malnutrition was 11.9 per cent.



15-year-old Syrian boy Muhammad Najem inspects the damage at his school in Eastern Ghouta following regime bombardment. (Twitter @muhammadnajem20)

My name is Muhammad Najem and I am from eastern Ghouta in the Damascus countryside, I am 15-years-old I live here with my mother and siblings.


I am in eighth grade but I stopped studying three months ago because of the constant bombardment of the place in which I live.


My school was bombed by warplanes more than once but after each raid, we would return and try to complete our studies. But my school was bombed until it was completely destroyed and I no longer have a classroom within which to study or a playground to play in.


Schools destroyed


The other schools in Eastern Ghouta have also been targeted and destroyed.
I want to tell the world what is happening to us today and convey my suffering, which I live through every day because of the bombings and the siege.


I want to tell the truth and to tell people what is happening to us. We are besieged, we are hungry, we are under constant bombardment, we are exhausted from the displacement and the killing.

This war is not ending, but we are forced to grow up in these conditions and no one has done anything to protect and support the vulnerable here. Conferences and meetings and false peace talks fail while the Arabs and the rest of the world are still silent.


In this war we have already lost everything, and we are still losing more, every single day, every single one of us has lost something precious.


Losing my home and my father


I lost my house, which my father built with hard work and the sweat from his forehead. Then my father was killed two years ago after a shell landed on the mosque where he was praying.


Many of the children here have lost their fathers or their mothers, many of us have lost siblings and many of us have lost our homes.


We have been dismembered, we have lost parts of our bodies, our hands, our feet and our eyes.


The world will not be able to compensate us for anything that we lost. We have lost sight of the sky and the sun because of the war planes that fly over us day and night in order to bomb civilians.

Muhammad Najem studies by candlelight in the besieged Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta (Twitter: @muhammadnajem20)

The siege surrounds us. The specter of death and starvation hovers over us.


Last week the regime began to escalate its violent campaign against us. Planes indiscriminately drop bombs of hatred and destruction on us.


On Thursday, warplanes mounted yet more raids on residential buildings. Everyone went down to the cellars and we could hear the roar of the jets above us as we held each other’s hands.

muhammad najem‏ @muhammadnajem20 One of my friends was killed and the other was injured. This is the picture of my friend Salim after leaving the hospital yesterday after the violent raids on his house near my house. I love you so much and wish you and all the children of the world peace and safety❤ #saveghouta

I was walking in the street with some of my friends, including my friend Salim who lives next door to us when we heard the sound of jets approaching. We fled to the cellar, but Salim ran to his home to hide with his family and uncle. He did not know that at that moment six missiles were on their way to his house.


Smoke and black dust


Smoke and black dust filled the cellar, choking us and filling the cellar with darkness. Children cried and the women screamed as they tried to check on their terrified children.


When the dust settled, we saw that Salim’s house was completely destroyed and the Civil Defense teams were attempting to rescue the people, including Salim and his family, trapped under the rubble.


After hours of searching through the rubble, I found out that Salim had miraculously survived. But his younger sister had died, his mother suffered life-changing injuries and his younger brother is still missing. Salim’s little cousins Mohammed, Majid and Raghad were also killed in the air strike.


I find it hard to believe the life we are witnessing here in Ghouta. Today I am reassured at least because Salim has left the hospital, but he is unable to move because of his injury. We do not know what tomorrow will bring.

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“Catastrophe” in Yarmouk as ISIS seizes camp

18,000 Palestinian refugees include 3,500 children are trapped between Assad’s barrel bombs and ISIS beheadings in the besieged Yarmouk Camp in Syria.

The camp is under siege for 612 days by Assad regime, 700 days no electricity, 188 days without water, 77 people starved to death as of April 2, 2015.

Question is: What does #ISIS really want with the refugee Yarmouk Camp?

— Yarmouk is being annihilated’: Palestinians in Syria are left to their fate
— “Turn off your electricity, water, heating, eat once a day, live in the dark ”
— Why is that UN now supporting Assad who killed thousands of Muslims? Where is UN, when Assad starved thousands of Muslims in Yarmouk Camp?
— Beyond Inhumane
— The refugees of Yarmouk deserve better than silence
— UN agency voices ‘deep concern’ as violence in Yarmouk Camp intensifies
— Head of UNRWA calls for safe passage for civilians to leave Yarmouk Camp under ISIS attack
— Quote one former resident of Yarmouk Camp: “It’s a battle within a battle in a siege within a siege…”

Published on Apr 13, 2015
People of Al Yarmouk are not asking for much. They just need your support wherever you are in the world. Raising your voice and a simple act of solidarity can get them out of hell.

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Palestinians are starving and being slaughtered in  Yarmouk Camp Syria

alestinian refugees trapped Yarmouk Refugee camp

Massacre awaits  Yarmouk refugees

Fighting in Syrian refugee camp makes life beyond inhumane

violence in Yarmouk Camp between Assad forces and IS intensifies

Desperation for Palestinians trapped in Syrian refugee camp syria_assad_bomb_yarmouk_isis_40


Palestinians & Syrians are Trapped inside Besieged Yarmouk Camp

Yarmouk Camp:
571 days of siege
Power cuts continued for more than 651 days
Water has been cut for 141 days
Syrians are forced to eat dogs, cats and zoo animal to survive!

In the midst of the Syrian civil war, Yarmouk camp became the site of intense fighting between the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – General Command (loyal to the Syrian regime), and the Free Syrian Army. Even as the fighting began most of the population in the camp simply wanted to maintain the stable status quo before the war. Soon the Syrian regime surrounded the camp itself, and has since the summer of 2013 been cut-off from the rest of the world as part of the Syrian regime’s cruel siege starvation tactic. The situation reached such a desperate point that Muslim leaders in the area declared that the eating of rats and mules would be allowed, and grass became a source of nourishment.

”To know what it is like in Yarmouk, turn off your electricity, water, heating, eat once a day, live in the dark, live by burning wood” – Anas, Yarmouk resident.

In 2014, Yarmouk became a byword for the profound suffering experienced by Palestine refugees and Syrian civilians as a result of the conflict. Approximately 18,000 civilians remain trapped inside the neighbourhood in inhumane conditions, deprived of food, water and medicine, with health clinics and schools closed, streets and buildings damaged, and access to the outside world largely cut off. Yarmouk and its residents are in desperate need of support.

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A young boy in Yarmouk refugee camp in Syria pleading and crying tears for food and drink Get ready

Yarmouk Camp

Assad Regime created 3 Million refugees & Leave it to the World to fix it

Bashar al-Assad Regime has Redefined Humanity!

Syrians are besieged, bereaved, displaced, bombed, sniped, massacred, detained, tortured, raped, mutilated, gassed, starved by their own government Assad Regime since 2011 uprising for almost 4 years…

Assad Regime created 3.2 Million refugees, half of them are children. Most refugees are in Lebanon, Turkey, Egypt and Jordan. Twenty-eight countries expressed their solidarity with the Syrian refugees.

Syria Assad Regime massacre civilians
syrian refugees map
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Syrian war: Western countries to accept more refugees

Millions of Syrian Refugees need urgent help!

72 Hours To Throw A Lifeline To Syrian Refugees
Millions of Syrian Refugees need urgent help!
Syrians are not born to be refugees, they were are besieged, bereaved, displaced, bombed, sniped, massacred, detained, tortured, raped, mutilated, gassed, starved by their own government Assad Regime for almost 4 years… World remains silence.

Published on Dec 3, 2014

Without your immediate support, WFP cannot continue providing food assistance for Syrian refugees. Be one of those people making a difference today and join WFP’s 72-hour campaign to raise the $64 million! For you it’s a dollar. For them it’s a lifeline.