Eight-year-old survivor who tweeted Aleppo bombing recognised for raising awareness

An eight-year-old girl has been recognised for her efforts highlighting the plight of Syrians by live-tweeting from the ground in Aleppo during the civil war.

Bana al-Abed, who was seven at the time, is being awarded the Rising Star at The Asian Awards for bravely sharing "her perspective on one of the biggest humanitarian crises in history."

She gained worldwide attention in 2016 when she gave a voice to thousands of besieged children by live-tweeting updates on the war.

  • Video report by ITV News Correspondent Emma Murphy

She was a strong critic of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad who described her as "not a credible source" and accused her family of being part of the rebel propaganda war.

She responded by tweeting: "Sir Assad I'm not a terrorist, I just want to live and no bombing please."

She eventually escaped Aleppo, and along with her family fled to Turkey after the evacuation of Aleppo at the end of 2016.

Speaking exclusively to ITV News she told how she misses "everything" about her home in Syria.

She said: "I miss my school, my friends, I don't know what happened to them, if they are alive or not.

"I miss my house, I have a lot of memories there. I miss everything, I want to go back and build our houses again and live there in peace."

In a message to world leaders she added: "Please help us so we can be all one together and we can stop the war and make the life better all the time and the smile will be around the world."

Bana and her two younger brothers were among thousands of citizens trapped inside the rebel-held city as it was bombarded by Syrian government troops and their Russian allies.

With the help of her mother Fatemah, she documented scenes of fear and destruction in a call for international action.

"My god, help us to finish the war," she prays aloud in one video as bombs fall near to her house.

There was international outcry shortly before the evacuation in Aleppo when her Twitter account disappeared.

The last message from the account read: "We are sure the army is capturing us now. We will see each other another day dear world. Bye - Fatemah".

Many supporters feared the worst when searches for her account came back with the message "page doesn't exist" but thankfully she survived.

She is now delighted to be in London to receive the Rising Star award at The Asian Awards.

Paul Sagoo, Founder of The Asian Awards, said: "At only eight years old she has bravely shared her perspective on one of the biggest humanitarian crises in history.

"I am so glad that she has accepted our invitation to attend this year’s Asian Awards and collect the Rising Star Award in recognition of her resilience, unconquerable courage, and hope for herself and for other children around the world who are victims and refugees of war."