Refugees – Why They Are Justified to Flee Syria – Part 2

Syrian school children run past heavily damaged buildings in the rebel-held. area of Jobar, on the eastern outskirts of the capital Damascus. (Amer Almohibany, AFP/Getty Images)

To understand why refugee families had fled Syria one only needs to look at this picture. Who would stay in a town, city or country where their children have to run past the rubble of war to go to school – if schools are still even open?

Too many people seem to think that before the civil war that Syria was a backward, impoverished country full of citizens longing to come to the west.  This exhibits a remarkable ignorance of the facts.  Before the war, Syria was a modern country with an affluent, well educated population.  In fact, the literacy rate in Syria at 86.4% (CIA World Fact Book) was slightly higher than the U.S. at 86% (U.S. Department of Education April 2016).  
Syria’s cities were modern, and growing until the war began.  Now buildings, boulevards and neighborhoods have been reduced to rubble.

Despite the devastation, refugees consistently told our @CatholicRelief delegation that once peace arrives, they will return to Syria and rebuild.  Until then, they have every reason to flee, save their children and hope for peace.

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