KARAM'S STATEMENT ON SCHOOL ATTACKS 10/26/2016

Karam Foundation strongly condemns both the aerial attacks on the Kamal Building Complex in Haas, Idlib, where three schools were operating and the shelling attack on Wataniya School in Western Aleppo.  Our thoughts are with the surviving students, teachers, and parents.

At least 35 people, the vast majority students, were killed and over 30 wounded in the attack in Idlib carried out by Russian and Syrian army warplanes while 6 children were killed by rebel shelling on Wataniya School in Western Aleppo. These attacks follow a troubling and devastating trend of attacks on schools and students in Syria. Over the past 5 and a half years, more than 3,465 schools have been destroyed or damaged. Many have been converted for military use. The past month alone has seen more than 10 attacks on education centers, carried out by all parties to the conflict.  Across the country, schools have been subject to aerial bombardment, car bombs, and random shelling.

The right to education is a fundamental human right. Over 1.7 million children in Syria do not have access to schools. Another 1.3 million are at risk of dropping out of school. Many of the students do not go to school due to destroyed infrastructure and a lack of safety at schools.

“We are heartbroken by the recent deadly attacks on Syrian children attending school. It is a feat of sheer courage and resilience for any Syrian child to go to school while living in a war zone. They should be protected while exercising their right to learn. We condemn every attack on civilian institutions in Syria. We call on the international community to immediately take every measure to make protection of civilian life, especially innocent children’s lives, a priority in Syria,” said Lina Sergie, Karam Foundation’s CEO and Co-Founder.

Karam Foundation is dedicated to the education of Syria’s children. We call on all parties to respect the sanctity of schools and the right of children to learn. We also call on those who have attacked schools and schoolchildren to be held accountable. The children of Syria deserve to go to school and deserve to learn.

To see an interactive map of some damaged and destroyed schools in Syria, please look at OpenSyria’s report: “The Ruin of Syria’s Schools: Mapping Damaged and Destroyed Schools in Syria