Having a blast on used rockets

Spent rockets and missile shells in war-torn Syria are getting a new lease of life and, for a change, bringing joy to children.

In a region where air strikes and artillery fire are nearly daily occurrences, children have grown accustomed to warnings not to play outside, but adults have found creative ways to make sure the little ones can still have fun.

In the rebel-held town of Douma, about 10km north-east of Damascus, children can be seen playing on red-and-black swings made from rockets, according to an Australian Broadcasting Corporation report yesterday.

The sets were made by Mr Abu Ali al-Bitar, 40, a house painter who collected rocket debris, welded them into swings and then gave them a fresh coat of paint, the report added.

The townspeople urged him to build more sets, and farmers gave him rocket and shell debris that had crashed on their lands on the outskirts of Douma.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 19, 2016, with the headline 'Having a blast on used rockets'. Print Edition | Subscribe