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NFP pleads with gov to bring Aussie kids home

Major charity, Save The Children, has said that Australian children who were dragged to Syria and are now stuck in refugee camps should be brought home and given treatment.

Save the Children has written to Foreign Minister Marise Payne and Labor’s foreign affairs spokeswoman Penny Wong to ask for a commitment to bringing the children home.

More than 2500 children are living in three camps in northeast Syria, with Australian children caught up in the violence.

“Save the Children calls on Australia – a country of origin for some of the children caught up in this conflict through no fault of their own – to repatriate these children and their families safely,” chief executive Paul Ronalds wrote in his letter.

Ronalds said Australia should bring them home for rehabilitation and reintegration, with fair trials for any people involved in breaching Australian laws.

“Australia should do everything possible to maintain family unity, and to provide the specialised protection, health, and other rehabilitative support that these children and their families will need on their return,” he said.

The charity also wants Australia to stand by or increase its three-year, $220 million commitment to humanitarian aid in the conflict.

“I was recently in Jordan and Lebanon and saw first hand the difference Australian aid is making on the ground to the lives of Syrian children and their families impacted by this conflict,” Ronalds said.

The eighth anniversary of the Syrian conflict will be marked by an international Supporting Syria and the Region conference in Brussels from March 12 to 14.

In September 2015, the Australian government announced it would take in 12,000 refugees from Syria and Iraq in addition to the annual humanitarian intake. The last of these arrived in 2017.

With AAP.

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