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Human Trafficking

Prevalence, Abuse & Exploitation of Street Children

In the first decade of the 21st Century                                                           

Syrian Arab Republic

The Syrian economy grew by an estimated 2.4% in real terms in 2008 led by the petroleum and agricultural sectors, which together account for about one-half of GDP.

Long-run economic constraints include declining oil production, high unemployment and inflation, rising budget deficits, and increasing pressure on water supplies caused by heavy use in agriculture, rapid population growth, industrial expansion, and water pollution.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]


CAUTION:  The following links and accompanying text have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Syria.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspect(s) of street life are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring how children got there, how they survive, and how some manage to leave the street.  Perhaps your paper could focus on how some street children abuse the public and how they are abused by the public … and how they abuse each other.  Would you like to write about market children? homeless children?  Sexual and labor exploitation? begging? violence? addiction? hunger? neglect? etc.  There is a lot to the subject of Street Children.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.


Check out some of the Resources for Teachers attached to this website.


Street Children--Long-time NEF Concern  - Major New Arab Initiative

The Near East Foundation, November 23, 2004

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 10 June 2011]

Street children need prompt, effective interventions, if not to bring them back to their homes, then at least to lessen their suffering from street life.  In Syria they can be found around mosques and restaurants, parking lots and the intersections of main streets, begging for money and food or selling insignificant articles.


*** ARCHIVES ***

Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 11 February 2020]

CHILDREN - The government provided free, public education to citizen children from primary school through university. Education is compulsory for all children, male and female, between the ages of 6 and 12.

Palestinians and other non-citizens can send their children to school. Stateless Kurds can also send their children to school but because they do not have any identification, their children cannot attend state universities.

Concluding Observations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 6 June 2003

[accessed 9 March 2011]

[50] The Committee welcomes the ratification of ILO Convention No. 138.  It further welcomes the amendments to the 1959 Labour Code to increase the minimum age of admission to employment to 15 years.  However, it remains concerned that approximately 7 per cent of children under 14 are employed as workers and that labour law provisions do not extend protection, including effective inspections, for children engaged in work in the informal sector.

Information about Street Children - Syria [DOC]

This report is taken from “A Civil Society Forum for North Africa and the Middle East on Promoting and Protecting the Rights of Street Children”, 3-6 March 2004, Cairo, Egypt

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 27 July 2011]

From data collected on children in conflict with the law, beggars and child laborers, it appears that there were just over 480 homeless children (233 male, 248 female) arrested in Damascus in 2003.  Of these, 56% of the homeless boys and 46% of the homeless girls were aged between 7-12.  The data suggests that most homeless children in Damascus did not make the decision to leave home (or were not forced onto the streets) before the age of 7.

Education Reform Urged To Support Development

UN Integrated Regional Information Networks IRIN, Damascus, 24 July 2005

[accessed 10 March 2015]

The report noted a number of disturbing trends in Syrian education.  The rate of illiteracy rose from 17% in 2003 to 19% in 2005, with literacy rates showing an increased bias towards urban and suburban areas, and male students, according to the report.  Also, an estimated 25% of students leave school before finishing their primary level education, while 67% of students do not finish secondary education.

All material used herein reproduced under the fair use exception of 17 USC § 107 for noncommercial, nonprofit, and educational use.  PLEASE RESPECT COPYRIGHTS OF COMPONENT ARTICLES.  Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Street Children - Syria",, [accessed <date>]