Has anyone been reading Teen Vogue? This long-running fashion magazine has been publishing well-written and informative news articles for Teen readers. A topic of recent journalism has been the Syrian Civil War. This article recently broke down the most important things to know about this mounting conflict that has been culminating in the city of Aleppo:
- Aleppo, being the most populous city in Syria, has had the largest movement of refugees from within the country. The country as a whole has produced 4.8 million refugees while 6.1 million have been displaced (meaning they have been forced to leave their home but are still in Syria). Half of these displaced civilians are children. Refugees have been fleeing to neighboring countries such as Lebanon, Jordan, and Turkey which in turn have been having a difficult time accommodating the sheer volume of arriving refugees. Lack of food, jobs, and shelter has left refugees in Lebanon, Jordan, and Turkey living without sources of income. Although there have been reports of some refugees fleeing to Spain, France, the U.S and Canada, Turkey is home to nearly 2.7 million Syrian refugees.
- Syria’s current president, Bashar al-Assad, has held power since July 10, 2000. His presidency came unopposed after the death of his father, Hafez al-Assad, and when it was time for the people to vote he was reported as a unanimous victor with 97% of the popular vote.
- The country’s civil war, which started in 2011, resulted from Assad’s command to strike down a group of pro-democracy teenage protestors in the southern city of Deraa with gun violence. This event was crucial in activating the protests all over the country demanding for his resignation. Soon after, protests occurred throughout the country, violence began to escalate by both rebel and government forces, while rebel brigades were formed creating battlegrounds in Damascus, the capital of Syria, as well as Aleppo. After about two years of conflict, the UN reported in 2013 that 90,000 deaths occurred in wake of the conflict between rebel and government forces.
- Rebel forces are demanding social justice and political reform, while Assad is fighting to remain in power despite the efforts of the rebels to overthrow him. This civil war has left the once prosperous city to run without any hospitals, schools, and sources of food.
- On December 20th, 2016, buses meant to evacuate civilians out of Aleppo were set on fire, leaving them stranded.
- On December 29th, 2016, it has been reported that a cease-fire and peace treaty have been drawn after 5 and half years of conflict.
- 7 year old Bana al-Abed maintained a Twitter account with her mother to give the world a glimpse into the horrors the people of Aleppo have been facing.
Are you interested in keeping up with the news and current events? The Boston Public Library has subscriptions to newspapers that you can read in the library or online.
*”Stop the Press” features current events posts by Rebecca, the Teen Librarian at the Grove Hall Branch, on the first Tuesday of every month.