Daily Express

UK to welcome back children from Syria

- By Giles Sheldrick Chief Reporter

SIXTY British children still stranded in north-east Syria could soon be making their way to the UK after being found homes.

Relatives of the youngsters and local councils have stepped forward to offer sanctuary as pressure grows on the Government to allow those living in camps to return to the UK.

The children were displaced during the bloody conflict with Islamic State.

Some are orphans and unaccompan­ied minors, but the majority are still with their mothers. Government policy dictates children in Syria should not be separated from their mothers.

Officials previously ruled out repatriati­ng British citizens trapped in former IS territory but on Friday, a group of children rescued from fighting in northern

Syria were allowed to return home.The youngsters were all members of the same family.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said: “These innocent, orphaned children should never have been subjected to the horrors of war.

“We have facilitate­d their return home because it was the right thing to do.

“Now they must be allowed privacy and given the support to return to a normal life.”

Experts claim that more than 8,000 children from 40 different countries are still stuck in North-east Syria.

Misty Buswell, of the

Internatio­nal Rescue Committee, said: “Having lived through atrocities that no child should ever have to witness, we commend the British Government for reversing its decision and choosing to bring these children home.

“But they must now commit to bringing all 60 British children and their families back to the UK.

“Children should never be punished for the decisions or actions of their parents.”

Alison Griffin, of Save the Children, said: “There are still as many as 60 British children that remain stranded in appalling conditions and Syria’s harsh winter will soon begin to bite.

“All are as innocent as those rescued today and our very real fear is that they won’t all survive to see the spring.

“They must all be brought home before it is too late.”

 ??  ?? There are 60 British children in Syria
There are 60 British children in Syria

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