UNICEF Briefing Note
18 February 2014
As of today, there are 56 children in the Al Andalus facility after being evacuated from Homs. They include 34 boys between 15 and 18 years old; 10 boys under 15 years old; and 12 girls below 18 years old.
Most of the children under 15 and the girls are there with their families, because their fathers or brothers are still being processed.
We are aware of two unaccompanied children – a 7-year-old girl with relatives in Homs, and a teenager whose parents are in Lebanon, but who has family friends in Homs willing to provide shelter.
UNICEF is advocating for the expedited release of all remaining children.
The Governor of Homs has promised to assist in clearances of children, and UNICEF is coordinating with the Ministry of Social Affairs in preparing documentation for children.
UNICEF received information that the 18 children we had said on Friday had been released from the Andalus facility were in fact adults.
A major factor complicating age determination especially in the case of children is the near total absence of valid identification.
These figures are the most authoritative to date, based on head count, and cross-referencing with data provided by Shabab al Khair, the NGO appointed to manage the Andalus facility, but they are not scientific numbers.
For further information and interview requests, please contact:
Kumar Tiku, UNICEF Syria, email@example.com Mob: +963 934202330
Razan Rashidi, UNICEF Syria, firstname.lastname@example.org, Mob: +963 93 354 9020
Juliette Touma, UNICEF Regional Office for the Middle East and North Africa, email@example.com, Mob: +962 79 867 4628