Lebanese camp holds 'no future' for widows and orphans of Syria's war

·1-min read

Since the start of Syria's decade-long conflict, some 1.5 million refugees have fled to neighbouring Lebanon, many of them sheltered in camps along the border. FRANCE 24's reporters travelled to one such camp, a walled and gated community where women widowed by the war struggle to raise their children.

"There are no men here," says Souad Salem, who arrived ten years ago at the camp in Ersal, in northeastern Lebanon, with her husband and five children. The family of seven is now down to three. Souad has married off two of her children and lost another to the war in Syria, along with her husband.

"We call it the widow and orphan camp – we alone live here," she says. "Our husbands are all with god."

Children at the camp are forced to grow up fast, the girls in particular, most of whom are married off from the age of 14.

"That is our daughters' destiny," says Souad. "Because we are refugees, they have no alternative."

Click on the player above to watch the report by FRANCE 24's James André and Mayssa Awad.