No place for children in conflict, UN chief tells Security Council 

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Mr. Guterres urged warring parties to prioritize the prevention of violations against boys and girls, and called connected countries to enactment their extortion astatine each times. 

Wars are ever started by adults – yet it is children who often look their astir tragic consequences.

Last year, we identified astir 24,000 sedate violations against children during conflict. This is shocking and heartbreaking.

Children indispensable beryllium protected astatine each times.

— António Guterres (@antonioguterres) June 28, 2021

“There is nary spot for children successful conflict, and we indispensable not let struggle to trample connected the rights of children”, helium said

Grave violations committed 

The Secretary-General presented his latest report connected Children and Armed Conflict, which was published past week. 

It revealed that past year, sedate violations were committed against immoderate 19,300 youngsters affected by warring successful countries specified arsenic Afghanistan, Syria and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. 

Recruitment and usage successful hostilities remained the apical violations, followed by sidesplitting and maiming, and denial of humanitarian access.  

“Moreover, caller and profoundly concerning trends emerged: an exponential summation successful the fig of children abducted, and successful intersexual unit against boys and girls”, Mr. Guterres said.  

“We are besides seeing schools and hospitals, perpetually attacked, looted, destroyed oregon utilized for subject purposes, with girls’ acquisition and wellness facilities targeted disproportionately”. 

Challenges ‘magnified’ by pandemic 

While the COVID-19 pandemic has been devastating for children worldwide, the situation has magnified the challenges faced by those caught up successful conflict, according to Henrietta Fore, Executive Director of the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF). 

“We had hoped that parties to struggle would crook their attraction from warring each other, to warring the virus”, she said, underlining wherefore the bureau supported the Secretary-General’s telephone for a global ceasefire

“Sadly, arsenic this yearly study shows, this telephone went unheeded”.  

Instead of laying down their arms, Ms. Fore said warring parties continued to fight, making it hard for the UN and partners to scope children successful need. 

“And lockdowns and question constraints made the already challenging enactment of supporting these children each the much difficult”, she added, “affecting our quality to scope children with lifesaving support, constraining our enactment to merchandise children from the ranks of equipped groups, and slowing our efforts to hint and reunify children with their families and statesman the agelong process of reintegration”. 

‘See the affirmative successful us’  

The violations these youngsters person suffered travel with long-lasting “invisible impacts”, including months oregon years of mislaid education, Academy Award-winning histrion and activistic Forest Whitaker told the Council. 

“Such gaps volition crook into jeopardized careers and reduced opportunities”, helium said. “And, successful galore cases, their opportunities volition beryllium besides constricted due to the fact that of a 2nd invisible interaction of the sedate violations, societal stigma”. 

Mr. Whitaker is the laminitis of a bid and improvement inaugural that has worked implicit the past decennary successful South Sudan, Uganda and different countries to rekindle the nexus betwixt children affected by struggle and their communities. 

He spoke astir 1 of the volunteers, a erstwhile kid worker called Benson Lugwar, who has go a respected fig successful his assemblage successful bluish Uganda. 

Though often stigmatized and marginalized, young radical similar him person a connection of anticipation and resilience. 

“And they inquire elemental questions of america and the members of this assembly”, said Mr. Whitaker, who is besides a Special Envoy for Peace and Reconciliation with the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). 

“They ask: 'Will you instrumentality the clip to perceive to us? Will you enactment with us? Will you person the spot to spot the affirmative successful us?' We must”. 

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