Sat, 03 Dec 2022

© Provided by Xinhua

DAMASCUS, Nov. 18 (Xinhua) -- Persistent U.S. sanctions are impacting Syrians' life in an all-around way, including the children's space dream.

On the roof of the Syrian Astronomical Society (SAS) headquarters in the capital Damascus, space-loving children queued up to use the telescopes there to catch a glimpse of the moon and stars, while instructors explained to them the astronomic phenomena and their causes.

Tareq Burmo, one of the visiting children at SAS, told Xinhua that he has long developed a passion for astronomy, adding his dream would not stop at watching the sky with a telescope.

© Provided by Xinhua

"My dream is to be the first Syrian to walk on the moon," he said.

Muhammad Salem, another young visitor, said he has always wanted to study more about space and that he was excited to know stars have different colors.

"I have been coming here for more than a year because I love astronomy very much. I like to watch the planets and what goes on around their orbits through telescopes," said Muhammad.

Turkieh Jbour, an instructor in charge of a project called the "Little Astronomer," told Xinhua that the project focuses on providing information for children who are interested in space science, adding SAS is an important source for astronomy education as the Syrian curriculums include no designated subjects on space.

The SAS children's programs focus on teaching children in ways they can understand and have had a lot of success, she said, adding the organization has garnered numerous international awards for children-focused education activities.

© Provided by Xinhua

"However, because of the sanctions imposed on Syria, we couldn't get such prizes, which are useful and educational tools like telescopes and give us a better capacity to educate the children," Jbour lamented.

Muhammed Alassiry, the head of SAS, expressed his frustration with the sanctions, saying they have hampered the astronomical dreams of young Syrians.

© Provided by Xinhua

"The sanctions shouldn't target knowledge. What we do here is teach science and the prizes were educational tools for children. It's unfair to include children's toys in the economic sanctions," said Alassiry.

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