Read 8-Year-Old Bana Al-Abed's Heartfelt Letter To The French President

"I am asking you to stop this killing."

Syria's rebel-held Eastern Ghouta has been the site of especially deadly clashes between the rebels and the Syrian regime for days now, and France24 reports more than 500 people have lost their lives since February 18 as a result of such fighting.

With hundreds of thousands of residents still living in the Damascus suburb, which is struggling to care for its many wounded as it is continuously being pelted with shells and bombs from the Russian-backed regime, several world leaders are calling for a ceasefire. Such an action, which would be in the form of a 30-day truce, would permit necessary aid to reach the besieged locale and also allow for evacuations.

The Guardian reports French president Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel wrote to Russia's Vladimir Putin earlier this week in an effort to persuade the leader to support a U.N. security council resolution for a ceasefire in Syria, but as demonstrated by 8-year-old Bana al-Abed, world leaders aren't the only ones who can put pen to paper and demand action.

Prior to Macron and Merkel appealing to Putin to end the assault in Ghouta, the French politician received a plea from al-Abed, who two years ago escaped from Syrian city of Aleppo. In her handwritten letter to Macron, al-Abed asks the 40-year-old to "help the people of Ghouta."

"Many children were killed and the bombing doesn't stop. I am asking you to stop this killing. Please, do it for the children, you know they have no crime," she wrote. "I really want you [to] do everything you can."

Prior to her escape to Turkey, al-Abed's daily Twitter-based advocacy and pleas for the international community to help war-torn Aleppo led her to become known as "Syria's Anne Frank."

On Feb. 24, the United Nations passed a resolution calling for a 30-day ceasefire in Syria,. Per The Telegraph, it remains unclear if the regime will stop its assault on Ghouta, but there's no doubt many have been moved by al-Abed's call for help. 

As one Twitter user wrote, "You're a powerful voice Bana, don't stop speaking out. People do care. My heart breaks for Syria."

Added another, "Bana, I hope all the leaders will hear you. I'm very sad for all these people dying. I pray and think of them every day! I hope God will hear all our prayers. You are a brave and kind girl."

If you're interested in helping refugees like al-Abed, The International Rescue Committee is providing protection, health care, clean water, sanitation, resettlement assistance and more to Syrian refugees in Europe, the Middle East and the U.S., and thus far the organization has aided upwards of 4 million people in the region.

Cover image via Shutterstock / OBJM.


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