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Angelina Jolie left 'speechless' by Iraq trip

ANGELINA Jolie was left "speechless" during her recent visit to Iraq.

The 'Maleficent' star visited the refugee camps in the war-torn country as part of her work with the United Nations as Special Envoy of UN High Commissioner for Refugees, and she couldn't believe the "suffering" she witnessed on the trip.

Writing about her visit, she said: "I have visited Iraq five times since 2007, and I have seen nothing like the suffering I'm witnessing now.

"I came to visit the camps and informal settlements where displaced Iraqis and Syrian refugees are desperately seeking shelter from the fighting that has convulsed their region ...

"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. To say something that will show solidarity and give some kind of thoughtful guidance. On this trip I was speechless."

The 39-year-old actress and humanitarian also revealed that despite her many visits to the country, she could not have prepared herself for what she encountered this time around.

Describing some of the people she met, she recalled to the New York Times newspaper: "What do you say to a mother with tears streaming down her face who says her daughter is in the hands of the Islamic State, or ISIS, and that she wishes she were there, too? Even if she had to be raped and tortured, she says, it would be better than not being with her daughter.

"How can you speak when a woman your own age looks you in the eye and tells you that her whole family was killed in front of her, and that she now lives alone in a tent and has minimal food rations?

"Nothing prepares you for the reality of so much individual human misery: for the stories of suffering and death, and the gaze of hungry, traumatised children."

Topics:  angelina jolie iraq


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