Sonny Bill Williams both praised and criticized for graphic dead Syrian children pictures

Phil Jay 30/12/2015

Sonny Bill Williams

New Zealand Rugby star and heavyweight contender Sonny Bill Williams has received a mixed reception for posting graphic pictures of dead Syrian children on his social media account.

The 30 year-old World Cup winner, who is also 7-0 as pro through a sporadic ring career, visited Syrian refugee camps in Lebanon as a Unicef ambassador and decided to highlight the issue using a total shock factor.

williams tweet

Williams put out two pictures of youngsters killed in the region with the accompanying words, “What did these children do to deserve this?” – which were met by some positive reaction from his followers, but the opposite by others.

Unicef spokesperson Patrick Rose told the New Zealand Herald that Williams’ actions were, “a fundamental infringement of those children’s rights,” whilst the boxer himself had previously revealed his hope to bring more attention to the issue following his time spent in Lebanon.

“This was such an eye-opener… so ignorant as to what was going on over this way,” Williams said in a video posted surrounding his trip.


“It’s been an amazing few days, it’s definitely changed me for the better, and I’ll definitely look at things in a different light when I get back.

“Share a thought for the innocent lives lost every day in war.”