SARC Spokeswoman on WRD: Syria Has Been only Country to Receive Refugees without Visa

Around 320 child refugees of different nationalities participated in 'paper kite' activity organized Thursday by the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) in cooperation with the office of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in the cultural center in al-Adawi area in Damascus on the occasion of the World Refugee Day (WRD).

The activity targets refugees in Syria and the Syrian persons affected by the ongoing crisis in the country  and it aims to bring hope and smile to their faces, according to the SARC's official spokeswoman  Mouna al-Kurdi, who told the Syriatimes e-newspaper's correspondent  that the refugees in Syria are of Sudanese, Somalian, Afghan and Iraqi nationalities, who were forced to flee their countries because of wars in their homelands.

"Syria has been the only country that received Arab refugees without visa. And the child refugees in the country say that they are not afraid of being here and they will stand by Syria during the ongoing crisis," al-Kurdi stressed, indicating that each statement on the coloured kites- put at the corridor of the cultural center – ends with 'I exist'.

"Today's activity will be held with participation of two famous actresses- Nadin Khouri and Sulaf Fawakhirji- plus SOS Goodwill Ambassador the child Zien Obied. There will be African folkdances ,stages, songs and short films about SARC activities in some areas in Syria," she added.

I have got used to live in Syria

One of the participants in songs- her name So'ad- told us that she came from Somalia to Syria in 2003 and the purpose of her participation in the activity is to tell the whole world that she is happy in Syria despite the current circumstances in it.

"I have got used to live in Syria. I have spent in it the most beautiful time in my life," she said.

This girl is one of the talented refugees, who staged two wonderful scenes about  the conflict between good and eviland about hope.

I lost my homeland

One of the participated refugees said in a monologue : "Look at those who are sitting at your right and at your left. Are their problems bigger than yours?.. Their problems are not bigger than my loss. I lost my homeland."

Another one said: " I was walking in the old city of Damascus where I met a little girl running with kite. The girl came towards me and said you are beautiful when you smile. She gave me her kite and entered to a home with a wooden door.  After seconds, I heard the Adhan[Also called Azan. It is the Islamic call to worship] and the church bell ringing. I remembered what the little girl said to me. I remembered that I have to change my life. I started to run with the kite. Yes, there is hope."

Hope

Hope was the main idea in the activity held this year, the Syrian actress Sulaf Fawakherji, who participates each year in SARC celebration on the WRD, told us, stressing that Syria expresses solidarity with refugees and displaced persons all over the world.

"Syria has opened its door to all Arabs and it is still supporting refugees  on its territories despite the current circumstances," she affirmed, adding that the mother doesn't neglect her children or her guests.

50,000 refugees in Syria

Syria has been a very generous country for the past 70 years in receiving, hosting and supporting millions of refugees, Palestinians, Iraqis, Somali and Sudanese among many other nationalities who despite the crisis are still living and thriving in Syria. Today, Syria hosts more than 50,000 refugees who have remained in the country despite the crisis, according to the UNHCR office in Syria.

The talented refugees need support in order to tap into the talent they have to see how best talent can be used , Head of Operations in the UNHCR  Jahangir said, pointing out that Albert Einstein was a refugee.

Actually, the program of the activity, which had to be held on June 20 but rescheduled to avoid Ramadan,  was very interesting despite the hot weather in the theater of the center where more than 200 persons sat down and they were very interactive with children on stage.

Reported by: Basma Qaddour

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