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    On Children's Day, Syrian children in Jordan pray for peace
    English.news.cn 2015-06-02 11:39:29
    Saba Sleiman, 14, wishes to return home in Syria, where she used to play with her classmates after school and have a good time.

    The 14-year old girl fled to Jordan along with her family when the turmoil started in Syria in 2011.

    "I miss Syria. I used to enjoy going to school every day, chatting with friends and visiting one another. Those were really happy days," Sleiman said.

    Sleiman, who lives in Amman, is one of hundreds of thousands of Syrian children registered as refugees in Jordan.

    "I do not know when we will return home, I hope soon. The Syrian regime's attacks and the violence there forced us to leave. I wish for peace again," Sleiman said in an interview with Xinhua.

    Her mother, Alia, said her five children suffered from several psychological problems after leaving Syria.

    "My children refuse to go to school. They are afraid most of the time, especially my two elder sons who saw people die right in front of them before we fled to Jordan," Alia said.

    "My children lost their childhood because of what they have been through over the past four years. They miss Syria," Alia said.

    The Jordanian government recently said the number of Syrians in Jordan has reached 1.5 million, 51.8 percent of whom are children.

    Official figures indicate that only 52 percent of Syrian male children in Jordan go to school compared to 62 percent of female Syrian children, constituting a low percentage.

    Humanitarian aid organisations in Jordan indicated recently that the numbers of Syrian children working to help their families in Jordan has reached 60,000.

    "The situation of Syrian children outside refugee camps might be better as they go to school and are free to go out with their families, but for Syrian children inside refugee camps the situation is exceedingly difficult," Hala Hammoudeh, an employee at a humanitarian aid NGO supporting Syrian children at refugee camps in Jordan, told Xinhua.

    "Although there are entertainment facilities in camps along with schools, a low percentage of children go to school. Many of them suffer from serious psychological problems and are depressed," Hammoudeh said.

    Mahmoud Abu Samara, a 17-year old Syrian living in the Zaatari refugee camp, said in a recent interview that "I do not want to go to school because even if I do well in high school, I will not be able to leave the camp to complete my studies at university."

    "After leaving Syria, I think I lost hope for a better life. All I want now is to return there and live peacefully even if I work as a waiter," said Abu Samara.

    According to social worker Hammoudeh, there are many cases similar to Abu Samara at the camps.

    "There are cases that are even worse. Some of the children are traumatized and it will take them years to heal, especially those who saw their family members killed," Hammoudeh said.

    "All I want is peace and safety. Nothing else matters," Abu Samara said.
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