Bana, born in 2009 in Aleppo, Syria, is known worldwide for her tweets during the siege of the city in 2016 and for her subsequent calls for peace and an end to all global conflict. Her tweets have earned her a legion of admirers around the world by giving a remarkable insight into the daily horrors of life in the city at this time, including air strikes, hunger and the prospect of her family’s death. In December 2016, Bana and her family were safely evacuated from Aleppo to Turkey. Bana’s debut book, DEAR WORLD, published with Simon & Schuster in 2017 and has sold in over 17 countries globally. In her own words, and featuring affecting letters from her mother, Fatemah, DEAR WORLD is not just a gripping account of a family endangered by war it also offers a uniquely intimate, child’s-eye perspective of one of the biggest humanitarian crises in history. In the past year, Bana has been awarded the 2018 Atlantic Council Freedom Award and has been named a Rising Star by the Asian Awards 2018.
“I told my mom “mom, why nobody hears us? why nobody saves the children? why nobody does something? Why nobody hears the voice when all the children are yelling and crying and running from bombs?” And then my mom told “you can tweet,” and then I started tweeting and my first tweet and I was so scared that nobody will hear me. I told my mom “I think it didn’t work” and then she told me “wait.” I waited and then the other day I opened the phone and many people started hearing me.”