A generation of young children is growing up traumatized by the violence in Iraq. Many witnessed the murder of their family or were wounded themselves. Now, there’s a new threat – child kidnappings.
“We were walking and then my mother and father exploded”, states five year old Seif. He’s now being cared for at the Beit al Aman orphanage. But funding is running out and the centre may have to close. Dr Mohsen believes young children are already becoming more aggressive. “I saw a bunch of kids pretending to kidnap and torture other boys”. And just when it seemed life couldn’t get any more difficult for Iraq’s children, a new danger has emerged. Two brothers were abducted leaving school. “They kept asking me if I was a Sunni or a Shia”, states one. “I thought they were going to kill us and dump our bodies.”