Shell Energy Entrepreneurs banner Yudala banner
Pictured: The world’s youngest soldier in action

By News Express on 30/03/2013

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon

Views: 4,737


The video of the world’s youngest active soldier in action is causing a lot of unease across the world. The shocking video shows eight-year-old Ahmed on the front line of Syria’s civil war, smoking like an adult, fighting and telling the story of his lost childhood.  

Currently playing on the website of The Daily Telegraph of London, the video was described by the paper as “one of the most shocking images from the Syrian war. An eight-year-old boy draws deeply on a cigarette, the small fingers of his other hand clutching an AK-47 rifle that balances awkwardly against his chest.

“He is too small to be able to hold his weapon properly, but this little boy, Ahmed, is already a fighter in the Syrian civil war.”

The photograph seen here, taken on the front line in Aleppo’s Salaheddin district, was used by media outlets around the world in a jolting reminder of the dehumanising character of war.

In the Telegraph story Ahmed said he went from being a carefree boy with a loving family to a child soldier living on one of the most lethal streets of the devastated city of Aleppo.

“I ended up helping my uncle and his comrades because I have no other choice, there is no school, my family is dead, what choice do I have?” he said.

Ahmed’s mother and father died in a mortar strike in Salaheddin neighbourhood, where his father had been working as a fighter with the rebel Free Syrian Army. Now the only person Ahmed has left is his uncle, a rebel who the boy follows and imitates as he fights against government soldiers.

In a red jumper and black trousers, Ahmed looks dressed in a uniform for school. For several weeks now, however, the front line has been his only playground.

In the video above, the boy, clutching his gun, runs across a road littered with bullet cartridges, broken electricity cables and strewn possession from the nearby homes that have long been abandoned by civilians.

A blanket strung across the road punctured with holes and supported by a barricade made from the metal carcass of a burnt vehicle is the only cover from enemy government snipers that are stationed just one street away.

The words Ahmed utters are incongruous with his child’s voice:

“There is always something to do here, I am never bored. The fighting has calmed down a lot from last year, we had a lot of mortars, but snipers are still a big problem.”

“Sooner or letter the regime will kiss you with one of their bullets,” he added.

There is little left of the innocent and playful youthfulness of boys of Ahmed’s age, unnervingly replaced with the mannerisms of a grown man.

In the video footage, Ahmed is seen lounging against his chair, holding his cigarette with the ease of a chain smoker. His expression is unsmiling and uncaring. His eyes stare blankly, telling the story of his lost youth.

Aleppo’s front lines are lethal. Riven with snipers and erratically bombarded by artillery and air strikes, the threat of death hangs in the air.

When The Daily Telegraph visited a rebel group in Salaheddin last month, the group had lost three men, two of them less than 18 years of age, in the space two weeks.

Ahmed spends some of his time helping to man one of the front line outposts.

“Weapons are heavy I still have a difficult time shooting them, I can only shoot resting on the floor,” he said.

Resting his gun on a low rising wall, Ahmed watches for a sighting of a Syrian government soldier, his small fingers already resting on the trigger, ready to shoot.

He mainly helps his rebel comrades with chores on the front line. He brings them tea or resupplies the other fighters with home-made grenades and bullets.

The hours are long and without any pattern.

“There is no schedule or time here in Salaheddin,” he said.

A report by Human Rights Watch has warned that hundreds of children from the towns worst affected by the conflict in Syria are being trained to take part in the war. Young boys, mostly from the age of 14 years old are sent on reconnaissance missions or to smuggle weapons to opposition groups.

Over two years into the conflict that has claimed over 70,000 lives, hundreds of schools have been forced to close.

With no education, and with many traumatised by the violence or from witnessing the death of loved ones, a generation of children is being lost to the Syrian conflict.

In one of the most disturbing moments in the video, Ahmed’s uncle crouches behind a wall with the little boy and lights a grenade that is in the boy’s hand. Ahmed throws it over the wall and they wait for the explosion.

The child said he used to enjoy riding his bicycle. Now his favourite pass time is to play at being a soldier.

Photo by Sebastiano Tomada courtesy Telegraph.

Source News Express

Posted 30/03/2013 2:51:57 PM

 

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon


 

CLASSIFIED ADS

Let us build the most comprehensive online database of worthy and credible Nigerians from all walks of life. It is worth doing!

Loss Off Your Belly Fats, Upper Arm Fat and Body Fats In 2weeks Time.. Click HERE To Start Now!

 

You may also like...
Sweet vengeance: Arsenal bundle Liverpool out of FA...

FG loses $1bn yearly to medical tourism

Aregbesola diverted Osun bailout funds, group insists

Nigerian man with 86 wives in court over...

Aso Rock moves to establish (failed) Privatisation Tribunal...

Court voids Nyarko’s election; He’s still our governor,...

Expect a cloudy day, with chances of localised...

Amnesty chief brokers partnership between Akwa Ibom and...

Traitor or just unprincipled?: Gov. Aliyu dumps New...

Quit Notice: Coalition throws weight behind El-Rufai’s solution...

May Day: Amosun pardons dismissed workers, pays withheld...

Troops gun down female suicide bomber •Terrorists new...

 

Latest News Igbo youths ban killer herdsmen in South East Stay away from disputed Effurun land, Reps tell Army Messi misses penalty as Barcelona suffer first defeat of the season •Atletico Madrid crumble at home Niger Delta Avengers set to resume attacks •Vow to be ‘brutish, brutal, bloody’ Access Bank approves paternity leave for male employees Alheri denies owing FG N27.2b over fibre optic agreement Oshimili North suspends NURTW activities, stops revenue collectors Buhari to lead Nigerian delegation to AU summit NAF pilots bomb Boko Haram vehicle workshop in Sambisa FG aims to raise N110b at bond auction NiMet predicts dust haze, cloudy weather, reduced visibility 12 killed, 48 wounded in Maiduguri suicide bomb attack

 

Most Read Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (314,678 views) NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (303,860 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (243,983 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (201,019 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (189,735 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (178,979 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (155,266 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (139,243 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (135,873 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (124,212 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (121,369 views) Gunmen kill ASP, 2 other police officers in vain bid to kidnap Rivers PDP chieftain (118,746 views)

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (33) Business (2,852) Business Verdict (32) Columnists (790) Complaints & Requests (94) Enterprise & Opportunities (200) Entertainment (431) Features (541) Global Business Monitor (222) International (1,743) Interviews (139) Live Commentary (28) Love Matters (100) News (31,959) Opinion (864) Pidgin (10) Politics (4,351) Religion (666) Sports (1,406) Stock Watch (25) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

CBN Banner advert

CBN Words on marble

 

 

Thierry Henry in Lagos Nigeria

 

APO Group Partner

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

Let us build the most comprehensive online database of worthy and credible Nigerians from all walks of life. It is worth doing!

Loss Off Your Belly Fats, Upper Arm Fat and Body Fats In 2weeks Time.. Click HERE To Start Now!

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera

Advertisement



 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

Let us build the most comprehensive online database of worthy and credible Nigerians from all walks of life. It is worth doing!

Loss Off Your Belly Fats, Upper Arm Fat and Body Fats In 2weeks Time.. Click HERE To Start Now!