Roger Waters: Humanitarian

Roger Waters's first success of 2019 has nothing to do with recording or performing. He spearheaded an effort to rescue a pair of children from war-torn Syria.

The BBC reports that Waters chartered a jet to reunite the seven- and 11-year-old boys with their mother.

Ayyub and Mahmud Ferreira were born in Trinidad, but were taken to Syria four or five years ago by their father, who became an Islamic state fighter -- and died in combat in 2017.

After being found by the Kurdish forces, the children were taken to a refugee camp in northern Syria. Waters adds, "We all flew off to Irbil in northern Iraq and did a lot of hand-shaking and meetings with the [local officials], and eventually the rescue team set off across the border with all the permissions."

Waters persuaded the Trinidadian government to issue travel documents for the boys and paid for the jet and crew. A longtime critic of Western military intervention in Syria, the musician says his wealth enabled him to help, "but also it gives me some sort of a platform to say, what about all of the others? Why aren't we doing anything?"

Mike Bell

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