UNICEF has verified as many as 266,000 cases of grave violations against children in over 30 conflict situations across Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Latin America over the past 16 years. These are only the cases verified through the UN-led Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism, established in 2005 to systematically document the most egregious violations against children in conflict zones. The true figures will be far higher.
From Afghanistan to Yemen, and Syria to northern Ethiopia, thousands of children paid a devastating price as armed conflict, inter-communal violence, and insecurity continued.
Afghanistan, for example, has the highest number of verified child casualties since 2005, at more than 28,500 – accounting for 27% of all verified child casualties globally.
Meanwhile, the Middle East and North Africa region has the highest number of verified attacks on schools and hospitals since 2005, with 22 such attacks verified in the first six months of this year.
As stressed by UNICEF´s Executive Director Henrietta Fore, zones in conflict again prove annually a terrible disregard for children´s rights and well-being.
In this regard, Ms. Fore urged to do as much as possible and take concrete measures to keep them safe. Even though UNICEF has still no official figures for current year, in 2020 the UN verified 26,425 grave violations of children’s rights in conflict zones.