Shakira calls for protection of refugees around the world

2015-09-23 20:00

New York - Singer Shakira used her star power on Tuesday to speak out about the migrant crisis in Europe and the Middle East, calling on world leaders and civil society to share the burden and prioritize the protection of refugees, especially children.

The Colombian singer said nations need to come together to find a solution to the Syrian conflict and the ensuing migrant crisis.

"Children should not pay the price of war," Shakira said, speaking at UN headquarters in New York just days ahead of the annual high-level session of the UN General Assembly.

"All of us have a responsibility today and we cannot escape it - not the leaders of the world and not us, the civil society."

The singer choked up as she talked about the image of 3-year-old Alan al-Kurdi, a Kurdish boy from northern Syria whose body washed up in Turkey after an accident while his family tried to flee to Europe.

Alan died in early September along with his 5-year-old brother Galip and their mother, Rehan, while making the perilous boat journey.

"Every time I think of the Kurdi brothers, I think of the lyrics of that John Lennon song, Imagine - 'Imagine all the people sharing all the world'," the singer said.

"Why can't we share all the world? What's holding us back?"

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