Coinciding with World Refugee Day on June 20th, World Vision International released a report revealing the terrible scars Iraqi children are suffering from witnessing acts of violence and death first-hand.
In the report entitled 'Trapped! The Disappearing Hopes of Iraqi Refugee Children', World Vision showed that 43 percent of children witnessed acts of violence in Iraq and another 39 percent of them had someone close to them die from the violence.
The author of the report, Ashley Clements who is also an emergency response advocacy adviser for World Vision International says that these children are now trapped in living between two 'debilitating' situations.
"These children have been kidnapped and held for ransom, witnessed brutal home invasions, suicide bombings and murders," he said. "An entire generation of Iraqi children is now trapped in one debilitating limbo or another – either living as refugees outside Iraq without official status to ensure access to essential services, or living in Iraq itself, caught in the crossfire of carnage inside their country."
He believes that education and adequate healthcare are keys to helping these children cope with the trauma of the current situation.
"These children, hundreds of thousands of them, need immediate access to education and adequate healthcare," he adds. "The structured classroom environment is a powerful place for helping children work out stress and trauma."
More than two million Iraqis have flooded into neighbouring countries – particularly Jordan and Syria, while a further two million people are internally displaced within Iraq's borders.