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Activists use Pokemon GO to tell the world about Syria’s children

Pokémon GO fans in Syria have created a campaign to draw attention to the plight of children trapped by the war in Syria.

Images of children holding pictures of Pokemon characters with a plea for help along with the Syrian city in which they’re located appeared on the Internet in recent days, leveraging the popularity of the newly-released augmented reality game to draw attention to the youngest and often most helpless victims in the five-year Syrian civil war.

Released earlier this month, Pokémon GO is a location-based gaming app which has already garnered 1 billion downloads, allowing players to seize and fight virtual monsters, called Pokémon, that appear on the screen.


Most of the pictured children are from the northwestern Hama and Idlib provinces, both scenes of intense conflict in recent weeks.

Children hold up photos of popular Pokémon characters alongside backdrops depicting their horrific narratives.
Activists at the Revolutionary Forces of Syria Media Office and others like Moustafa Jano, a Syrian refugee living in Sweden, also created similar images.

Since its short debut, Pokémon GO has taken the number one spot on the iTunes app store in over 20 countries and has more than doubled the value of its parent company Nintendo.


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