The actress writes an op-ed pleading for support for Syrian refugees after her visit to their camps

By Sheila Cosgrove Baylis
Updated January 28, 2015 06:05 AM
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Angelina Jolie has written a powerful op-ed piece for The New York Times about her visits to camps for Syrian and Iraqi refugees.

“I have visited Iraq five times since 2007, and I have seen nothing like the suffering I’m witnessing now,” she writes in the 800-word article, which appears in Wednesday’s print editions.

Jolie, 39, has traveled extensively as the Special Envoy of United Nations High Commission for Refugees.

“For many years I have visited camps, and every time, I sit in a tent and hear stories. I try my best to give support,” she writes. “To say something that will show solidarity and give some kind of thoughtful guidance. On this trip I was speechless.”

The actress then describes some of the heartbreaking stories she has heard on her most recent trip.

“Nothing prepares you for the reality of so much individual human misery: for the stories of suffering and death, and the gaze of hungry, traumatized children,” the mother of six writes.

Jolie pleads for greater support for the Syrian refugees.

“It is not enough to defend our values at home, in our newspapers and in our institutions,” she says. “We also have to defend them in the refugee camps of the Middle East, and the ruined ghost towns of Syria.”