Berlin (Qasioun) – The Game of Thrones’ Irish actor Liam Cunningham paid a surprise visit to a Syrian student who is now living in the German city of Stuttgart, a month after first meeting him in a refugee camp in Jordan.
The pair became friends when the Irish actor visited a refugee camp in the city of Irbid in September, as part of a project by World Vision to highlight the plight of refugees.
Cunningham told the Irish independent “He nearly collapsed when he saw me, i crept up behind him and tapped him on the shoulder. He didn't expect it at all. We'd stayed in touch after Jordan and he sent me photos of his passport as soon as he got the good news. He was just so delighted. He'd never been on a plane before."
Cunningham added "He had to pull some of his friends from the rubble. He witnessed children that he grew up with, children that he played with, die right in front of him,"
Despite the horror that he witnessed, Cunningham said Hussam is concentrating on building his future and is a "remarkably positive person".
Cunningham said that he is inspired by the young boy's determination: "Hussam taught himself English online, and now he’s learning German. He told me about how his friends died, family members died, but he won't let it get at him," he said.
"He has this incredible self-belief for someone so young. The horrors in Syria won't take away his humanity. He hopes to go back and rebuild his country one day."
"The real danger here is that children are missing out on an education. They're becoming angry by the violence that they're witnessing and, without an education, they're ripe for recruitment by groups like ISIS. Without the knowledge, how are they to know any better? Denying these children of their right to an education will only make the situation worse," said Cunningham.
"The government are just sitting on their hands, they need to get up off their a**ses and stop making excuses. Irish people do care. Their voices are ignored by the people in power but there's real empathy there. We need a stronger political will. We need to demand that they listen. We pay their wages."
He added: "It's not all doom and gloom. Positive stories like Hussam's prove that people can make a difference.
"But this war started in 2011 and five years later it's not getting any better, it's getting worse, and the situation won't improve until the bombs stop dropping."
Source: Irish Independent