A Syrian youth runs past blood stains and debris following airstrikes by government forces on the rebel-held town of Douma on August 20, 2015. AFP PHOTO / SAMEER AL-DOUMY
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"However hard you try, you just can't imagine how hard this journey is for me," says Abu Fahed, 25, who lost both his legs in a bombing and is fleeing Syria's war through the Balkans in a wheelchair.He is among some 250,000 people who have lost limbs in Syria's savage 4-year-old conflict, and among dozens in wheelchairs and on crutches who are braving the especially arduous journey over the Aegean Sea, then up to northern Greece, through the Balkans, Hungary and ultimately northern Europe. Khaled, a 20-year-old Palestinian-Syrian who lost his left leg and suffered serious wounds to the right in government shelling in August 2013, is making the journey on crutches.Khaled said that as a Palestinian Syrian, he had "no choice" but to make this nearly impossible journey through the Balkans, which has become one of the major routes for the several hundred thousand people entering Europe this year.Four young men from southern Syria volunteer to carry the wheelchair through the especially rough tracks.
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