Yemen. Iraq. Syria: Bombs cause people to flee

Report
from Handicap International - Humanity & Inclusion
Published on 13 Mar 2019 View Original

Millions of families have been forced to abandon their homes after years of conflict and violence. In places like Yemen, Iraq, and Syria, people struggle to stay alive in their communities, until they have no other choice but to flee.

This month marks two anniversaries that no one is celebrating: Four years of conflict in Yemen and eight in Syria.

The numbers

An estimated 190,350 Yemenis have fled to neighboring countries
More than 280,000 people are seeking refuge in Yemen
An estimated 400,000 Syrians have been killed, according to the United Nations
As of December 2016, 4.81 million Syrians have fled the country
6.3 million Syrians are displaced internally
More than 10 million Syrians are exposed to the risk posed by explosive remnants of war
2.1 million Iraqis displaced inside the country
More than 360,000 Iraqis displaced, living in unfinished and abandoned buildings

Humanity & Inclusion provides emergency care to people with disabilities and injuries living in Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, and Yemen. Every day, our teams meet beneficiaries who share horrifying stories of bombs, torture, terror, and escape. But we take stock of their strength. Their survival. And together we set new goals. We celebrate new victories, however small.

Abdelkrim, 60, from Homs, Syria

"One day, while I was in front of the house, I saw planes in the sky. I thought I saw an unmanned aircraft in the middle of reconnaissance. Then it launched a missile that exploded in the street. Shrapnel came into my left leg." Abdelkrim bandaged his leg and when he finally made it to a doctor, he was told it had to be amputated due to infection. Today, Abdelkrim is recovering thanks to the rehabilitation care he receives from Humanity & Inclusion's team in Jordan. "I wish the war would end and that everyone could return in peace and security."

Warda's family, from Iraq

In February 2017, Warda and her family were caught in an explosion as they were fleeing Mosul, Iraq. After having both of her legs amputated, the young woman recovered in a hospital on the outskirts of the city, with her husband and daughter, who were also injured. Humanity & Inclusion's rehabilitation team provided Warda and her family with psychological support and physical therapy.

Yesser, 12, from Yemen

Yasser was doing homework next to his father when they were both struck by an explosion. Yasser lost his leg and his father did not survive. Today, Yasser receives rehabilitation care from Humanity & Inclusion's team in Yemen.

Wafa, 42, from Homs, Syria

"The planes attacked the city and sent bombs without any mercy to the families and innocent children who still lived there." In July 2012, three bombs fell on Wafa's house. During the attack, Wafa broke her left leg. "When I came out of the coma, my burns and my leg were terribly painful. But this pain was nothing compared to what I felt when I learned that four of my children had died. I could not protect them." Today, Wafa receives rehabilitation care from Humanity & Inclusion's team in Jordan.

Ali, 1, from Iraq

In April 2017, Ali and his family were used as human shields in Mosul, Iraq. Caught in a bombing, Ali was severely injured and his parents and brother were killed. The young boy receives rehabilitation care from Humanity & Inclusion's team in Iraq. Our team also provides his aunt and uncle, who are taking care of him, with advice on how to help Ali with physical therapy exercises.

Kamal, 15, from Dera'a, Syria

"I woke up with shards of glass all over my body and the bedroom door had collapsed on me. The air was dusty. My brother was trying to take me to my mother's room, but I could not hold onto both of my legs." The family manages, with difficulty, to bring Kamal to the nearest hospital: "My whole body was covered with blood. I was operated on briefly at first, then I had two operations to both my hand and my legs. I've never used weapons, and yet it was me that was bombed. I feel only sadness. When you do not feel safe in your own country, where can you be?" Today, Kamal receives rehabilitation support from Humanity & Inclusion in Jordan.

Ali, 20, from Syria

In 2013, Ali lost the use of his legs after being seriously injured in a bombing in Syria. The young Syrian refugee now lives with his family in a makeshift camp in the Beqaa Valley in Lebanon. Humanity & Inclusion's rehabilitation team has been helping him adapt to his disability through physical therapy.