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7-Year-Old Syrian Refugee Publishes Memoir

Bana al-Abed is no ordinary seven-year-old: she is about to publish a memoir. At only seven years of age, she has experienced things that most people can only imagine. Bana is a Syrian refugee who has been an outspoken advocate for Syrian people on social media, specifically Twitter.

The memoir will be titled Dear World and will be published by Simon & Schuster. Christine Pride, a senior editor at the company, expressed her enthusiasm about the book, as she believes it tells an important story. Al-Abed took to Twitter to express her own excitement, saying, “I am happy to announce my book will be published by Simon & Schuster. The world must end all the wars now in every part of the world.”

Al-Abed and her mother, Fatemah, who helps her daughter with her tweets, use Twitter to record Bana’s struggles as they happen. Al-Abed posts about her fears of air strikes, hunger, and even death. She documented her family’s escape from Aleppo to Turkey.

The young refugee brings a new voice and perspective to the conversation regarding Syrian people and their struggles. By reading the posts and eventually the memoir, written with her mother’s help, we can see the violence in Syria through the eyes of a child. However, her posts and writings have the maturity of a young woman who has experienced a lot of hardship.

Christine Pride continued, “Like so many others, I was completely captivated by Bana’s tweets from Syria, which were harrowing and heartbreaking and put a human face to this terrible quagmire. Recalling iconic young heroines such as Malala Yousafzai, Bana’s experiences and message transcend the headlines and pierce through the political noise and debates to remind us of the human cost of war and displacement.” Pride recognizes the importance of voices like al-Abed’s and Yousafzai’s as reminders of the people that are personally affected by violence. Like Yousafzai, al-Abed shows a shocking amount of maturity for her young age, which may in part have been brought on by her harrowing experiences.

Al-Abed wrote in a statement, “I am so happy to have this opportunity to tell my story and the story of what has happened in Aleppo to the world. I hope my book will make the world do something for the children and people of Syria and bring peace to children all over the world who are living in war.”

Featured Image by Mustafa Khayat on Flickr

Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0)

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