Exclusive Photos: The Game of Thrones Cast Takes an Emotional Trip to a Syrian Refugee Camp
Lena: "We met some very incredible people who are suffering such injustice unnecessarily. We've met some incredible volunteers who worked at the camps in the face of all of it. It all is very overwhelming and heartbreaking, and frustrating, and it's certainly not going away any time soon."
Liam: "I was doing my best not to be emotional about it because I wanted to try to be useful, hear their stories, and do my best to be as attached as I could. I have to admit, when in 10 minutes of getting to a camp, I had tears in my eyes because it just struck me of how unfair the whole situation is, that it's out of these people's control. These beautiful families, these fantastic children ... I have never come across children who run up and want to say hello and smile. They're just extraordinarily trusting and happy and just so delighted to see anybody helping them."
Lena: "The children are wonderful – they're running around and they're playing and then you hear from their parents how much the children have changed since going through the war and making a terrifying journey. Now they're stuck. You look them in the eye and promise them they're not going to be forgotten."
Maisie: "I was just so blown away by how much bigger it is than I originally thought. People may think that I'm naïve about that, but ... it's the truth, and that's why it was important for me to come, and that's why it's important for anyone to come and anyone to see what's going on. Because you can read all the articles in the world, and you can Google as much as you like but when you actually come face-to-face with men, women and children, tiny children, that have spent the last few months fighting for their lives, it just really puts it all into perspective."
Liam: "There's a lot of fear that there would be some sort of terrorist wave with the refugees coming over. It's laughable. Somebody said to me, 'These are people who are at the opera on Saturday night and then have to get on a boat. They could only have what they could carry on their backs, and now they find themselves in a tent in 110-degree heat wearing secondhand clothes, wearing secondhand underwear, and they had lives like you and me.' These are the stories that we have to get out because it shames us all."
Liam: "I cannot tell you the admiration I have for the [volunteers] there who are doing this stuff. The emotional strength that they have is just absolutely remarkable, and their commitment was 24 hours a day. They're just trying to keep a level of happiness, a level of humanity, and a level of decency in these people's lives. It's amazing what they are doing, but they need people to get the word out. This will have to be kept on the front page. It absolutely has to be. Otherwise, they will lose hope. They will lose interest. The money will disappear, and they'll be swept under a carpet, and that's a crime against humanity if we allow that to happen."
Lena: "I think I was massively surprised by how emotional I felt. I consider myself a humanitarian and compassionate being and I wasn't prepared. I don't think you can be prepared for the stories you hear. To stand in front of a woman who's lost contact with her husband, and a woman whose children are ill in a tent. These are brilliant people who have jobs that would've changed the world. Doctors, oncologists, teachers, project managers – and they've lost everything. You feel incredibly sad and incredibly angry at the situation."
Liam: "I'm an actor. I'm not an urban planner or a specialist NGO person. If that helps get this word out that we need to be doing more, and we need people in Europe especially to annoy elected representatives whose salaries we, the taxpayers, are paying, to sort this out … the longer it goes on, the worse it gets."
Maisie: "I just think … how privileged I am, how privileged I am just for being born where I was born. It shouldn't have to be like that, everyone should be privileged wherever they're born."
Liam: "I am going to return. I'm going to go either to Jordan or Lebanon. I'm going to go for a longer period of time and I think I'm going to be staying."