Syria Children Shot at, Raped, Tortured: Report

A report released on Wednesday by a London-based charity, says children in Syria have been shot at, tortured and raped during the years of unrest and civil war, Reuters reported. They are suffering "layers and layers of emotional trauma," according to Save the Children's chief executive Justin Forsyth. The report cited new research carried out among refugee children by Bahcesehir University in Turkey, which found that one in three reported having been punched, kicked or shot at, according to Reuters. Young boys are being used by armed groups as porters, runners and human shields, and families are marrying off young girls, so they have less mouths to feed, Save the Children says. Two million children face malnutrition, disease, and severe trauma, in a conflict that has already claimed 70,000 lives. Both government forces and rebels have been accused of targeting civilians and committing war crimes, but according to refugees, President Bashar-al Assad's soldiers are directly targeting children. Meanwhile, millions of families have fled their homes to neighboring countries. About 80,000 refugees are living in barns, parks and caves, and children struggle to find enough to eat, Save the Children says in the report.

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