Children exposed to warfare: A longitudinal study

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Abstract

Following the 1991 Gulf War a group of 94 children in Iraq were interviewed at 6 months, 1 year, and 2 years after the war. The group was exposed to the bombing of a shelter where more than 750 were killed. Selected items from different inventories, including the Impact of Event Scale (IES) assessed children's reactions. Results reveal that children continue to experience sadness and remain afraid of losing their family. Although there was no significant decline in intrusive and avoidance reactions as measured by the IES from 6 months to 1 year following the war, reactions were reduced 2 years after the war. However, the scores were still high, indicating that symptoms persist, with somewhat diminished intensity over time.

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