Through the eyes of a child

Fear is the title of every war. hence, journalists archive it as result of the aggression. Capturing humanitarian shots leaves horrible impacts on children which makes it very challenging.

Jerusalem24 – When we speak about war we spontaneously think of fear, insecurity, frustration and loss. Losing family members and loved ones especially in a war, is an unbearable feeling, what if those suffering are children, most of them have witnessed several wars in Gaza and are still subjected to violence and wars.  230 Palestinians till the very moment, including 65 children were killed in Israeli airstrikes according to the Ministry of Health in Gaza. Many of the victims are children, with one said to be as young as six months. This amounts to almost three children injured every hour in Gaza since escalations began on the 14th of May between Israel and armed groups in Gaza.

Fear is the title of every war. hence, journalists archive it as result of the aggression. Capturing humanitarian shots leaves horrible impacts on children which makes it very challenging.

Nour Swirki, a journalist and a human rights activist from Gaza, speaks to Jerusalem24 about the challenges of publishing emotional and humanitarian shots from the war and their impact on children. In addition to the challenges parents face because of their inability to reassure their own children, as children consider their  parents their main source of security. ” we can’t exclude children from the situation, they are a part of it and we have to deal with them as a part of it,” said Nour. She continues, “we have to as parents reassure our kids every now and then, we have to tell them that we are okay, we are in good health especially as kids ask about not only themselves, but their friends and neighbors too.”

In the same context, Nour expresses the difficulty in documenting sensitive emotions of children who are victims of war as they can’t express in good terminology, unlike adults, they differ in the body language they use. “keeping in mind that as a journalist, you must have limits in the questions you ask of a child, you can’t ask him/her anything. You must take things from the perspective of a child,” said Nour. She added, “a child’s emotions are spontaneous and real, their simple words hit the hearts much stronger than adults.”

Nour referred to the importance of the children’s testimonial as many international interferences may be based on those testimonials. However, it’s important not to pressure those kids to tell their story respecting for example, their fear of punishment. It’s also very essential to inform them how their part is going to be introduced and who’s going to see it.

“Gathering testimonials from children in particular is very important, and I believe in their effect on people and their results. What’s happening to children in Gaza is a war crime, it will never be forgotten and  Israel must be referred to Legal accountability,” said Nour. She continues, “things must be done based on our media ethics and professionalism, we shouldn’t harm a kid physically or psychologically; we shouldn’t let a kid live the incident twice.”

As for Nour, those witnesses are live scenes to what happened and are still happening in the strip. They must be used in the most suitable way to service the just Palestinian cause.

Two days ago The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) published that among 65 children killed in Gaza there are 11 children were participating in its psycho-social program aimed at helping them deal with trauma.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mona Hijjawi

Editor/Presenter Graduated from The Arab Academy for Science Technology and Maritime Transport in Cairo, BA in Translation and Mass Communication. Currently Ramallah based Journalist and presenter at Jerusalem24.

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