Target: President of Syria, Bashar al-Assad
Goal: Demand that the government send military forces in to rescue 130 kidnapped Kurdish schoolchildren
Upon completion of their year-end exams on May 29, 2014, 153 Kurdish children were kidnapped by the Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (ISIS) outside the city of Aleppo, Syria. Several of these children have been returned to their parents, but 130 still remain hostages. The Syrian President must immediately send forces to save these hostages, as these children are no doubt terrified and their parents are helpless to act.
ISIS has been involved in recruiting child soldiers for the war effort in Syria, where these children are forced to man weaponry, act as medics on the front lines, and are pressured to become suicide bombers. Negotiations between ISIS and local officials in the area are ongoing, and a few children have been released or otherwise escaped. According to the boys that escaped, they told the media that ISIS was teaching the kids Sharia and jihadist ideology, and the boys were beaten if they misbehaved. While the boys were given food and water, they were also shown violent videos of suicide bombers and executions. The fathers of some of the students have received phone calls from their abducted children, and some even receive a call every week. The children state that they are being treated well, but that they are very terrified and want to go home.
It is against international law to take hostages, and conscript or enlist children during an armed conflict. Children do not understand the complexities of war—they should not be taken advantage of, nor should they ever be used for a war effort. Tell the Syrian President to send forces to save these young boys and end their nightmare.
Dear President Bashar al-Assad,
On May 29, 2014, 153 Kurdish children were taken hostage by the Islamic State of Iraq and Sham. Several of these children have been released or otherwise escaped, but 130 still remain hostages. These children are living a human’s worst nightmare, where they are being taught Sharia and jihadist ideology and shown violent videos of suicide bombers and executions.
I am writing this letter urging your forces to come save these children. While local authorities are negotiating with the Islamic State of Iraq and Sham, only a few children have been saved. Given the organization’s cruel history, it is also likely that the abducted children will be conscripted into the army. I urge you not to let this happen and do something to save these children before it is too late.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: charlesfred via Wikimedia Commons