The man behind a clown costume that warmed the hearts and minds of Aleppo’s traumatized children has become another tragic life lost in the Syrian conflict.
24-year-old social worker, Anas al-Basha, was killed by a missile strike that hit an opposition held neighborhood in eastern Aleppo on Tuesday, media outlets have reported.
To the soul of our beloved friend : Anas Al Basha.. you will stay in our hearts… https://t.co/3K14W5dkdy
— Zein Al Malazi (@aznan80) December 1, 2016
— New York Daily News (@NYDailyNews) December 1, 2016
al-Basha dressed as a clown at times to ease the psychological, emotional and physical pain many children have felt due to the bitter battled being waged between President Bashar al-Assad’s regime and opposition forces.
— Nino Fezza (@nfcinereporter) November 30, 2016
The young man worked full-time as a directer at Space for Hope, which supports 12 schools and four psycho-social support centers in the eastern part of the fallen city.
Last clown in Aleppo -a social worker who comforted children whose lives had been traumatised by war-has been killedpic.twitter.com/WzWywsT7Ts
— Aüd™ (@CodeAud) December 1, 2016
“He would act out skits for the children to break the walls between them,” Anas’s supervisor, Samar Hijazi, told to the AP. “All of us in this field (of childcare) are exhausted, and we have to find strength to provide psychological support and continue with our work,” he added.
At this time Space of Hope has suspended their operations due to the current state of Eastern Aleppo.
Anas is survived by both of his parents, who now reside in the countryside of Syria, and by his wife, who he had just married a couple of months ago.