June 27, 2017
An eight-year-old Syrian girl who drew global attention with her Twitter updates from the besieged Syrian city of Aleppo was named one of the most influential people on the internet by Time Magazine.
Other people on this year’s list included British author J.K. Rowling, pop singer Rihanna, celebrity Kim Kardashian, and U.S. President Donald Trump.
Time makes its annual choice based on those with global influence on social media and in generating news headlines.
Helped by her mother Fatemah, who manages the @AlabedBana Twitter account, Bana Alabed uploaded pictures and videos of life amidst the Syrian war, gaining around 365,000 followers on the micro-blogging site since last September.
“I can’t go out because of the bombing please stop bombing us,” Bana wrote when she first joined Twitter on Sept. 24, 2016.
“Aleppo is very good city but we need peace. I want to live like a child but instead I am stressed now,” she wrote.
Last December, Bana, who was seven at the time, and her family were evacuated safely from the rebel-held eastern part of Aleppo to Turkey, where they were greeted by Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan at his palace.
Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since early 2011 when Bashar Assad’s regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests, which erupted as part of the Arab Spring uprisings.
Since then, more than 400,000 people have been killed and more than 11 million have been displaced, 6.3 million internally and 5.1 million externally, across the war-battered country, according to the U.N.
Turkey, hosting more than 3 million Syrian refugees, which accounts for around 45 percent of all Syrian refugees in the region, has spent around $25 billion helping and sheltering refugees during that time.
Source: Daily Sabah.