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Girl, five, pulled alive from Damascus rubble in dramatic video

Girl, five, pulled alive from Damascus rubble in dramatic video
Posted at 10:28 AM, Feb 21, 2017

The dramatic rescue of a young girl trapped in the rubble of a bombed-out Syrian house has been caught on video and posted online.

The frantic work of a team of white-helmeted Syrian civil defense teams shows the heart-wrenching extrication of the crying child, a five-year-old named Aya, from a ruined house in the Tishreen area of Damascus.

NOTE: Video is graphic:


In the clip, a team is seen walking through the Damascus neighborhood as dust settles from a recent explosion.

A woman starts yelling in Arabic, directing the team of rescuers to a door and up a flight of stairs. When they reach the wrecked room where Aya is trapped one man calls out to another, instructing him to begin clearing the rubble with their bare hands.

"With your hands, with your hands! Come on come on!" he urges.

A few team members are filmed as they carefully, but urgently, remove pieces of fallen masonry.

One of the rescuers seeks to reassure Aya, telling her: "We are here now dear, we are here. Don't be scared, we are here."

Around a minute into the recording, she is heard crying. Slowly her dusty form emerges from the debris as the team works to remove the rubble covering her. When she is finally freed from the ruins, a stream of blood is seen running down her dust-caked face.

Aya survived her ordeal and was treated at a field hospital in the suburbs of Damascus, a member of the White Helmets volunteer search and rescue team told CNN. She has since been released.

The Syrian capital has been relatively sheltered from the violence raging elsewhere in the country, but some rebel-held neighborhoods are still the targets of government attacks, including barrel bombs.

The White Helmets member said 21 people had been killed and scores of others injured in a series of Syrian airstrikes in the Damascus region over the past five days. The account could not be verified.

Parts of the northern Syrian city of Aleppo, once a stronghold for rebel forces, were largely obliterated by Russian and Syrian airstrikes before pro-government troops reclaimed them from anti-Assad groups in December 2016.