A patrol vehicle drives past the Turkey-Syria border wall in Akcakale [Hosam Salem/ Al Jazeera]

Akcakale, Turkey – On one side, the concrete border wall topped with barbed wire winds down the street, its faded white painted facade relatively free from graffiti. However, opposite the section where “Neymar” – after the Brazilian football player – is sprayed on the wall, a number of Syrian refugee children spill out from the empty storefronts that are their homes. 

One such store is home to Abu Madyan and his wife, Hurriyeh, who fled Syria‘s Tal Abyad five years ago when a Kurdish militia invaded the Arab-dominated town. 

“I can see my house in Tal Abyad from the rooftop of the store I am living in,” he said, tears

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