UNICEF: 2018 Deadliest Year yet for Children in Syria
The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) said that the year 2018 has been the deadliest year yet for children in Syria since the start of the Syrian revolution in 2011, noting that “children in parts of the country remain in as much danger as at any other time during the eight-year conflict.”
“In 2018 alone, 1,106 children were killed in the fighting – the highest ever number of children killed in a single year since the start of the war,” UNICEF’s Executive Director Henrietta Fore said in a statement on Monday.
“Mine contamination is now the leading cause of child casualties across the country, with unexploded ordnance accounting for 434 deaths and injuries last year,” Fore added.
Fore went on to say she is “particularly concerned about the situation in Idlib in northwestern Syria where an intensification of violence has reportedly killed 59 children in the past few weeks alone.”
“The year 2018 also saw 262 attacks against education and health facilities, also a record high.”
“Children and families in no man’s lands continue to live in limbo. The situation of families in Rukban, near the Jordanian border, continues to be desperate, with limited access to food, water, shelter, health care and education.”
The UN official also said that she is also alarmed by the worsening conditions in Al-Hol camp in the northeast, now home to over 65,000 people, including an estimated 240 unaccompanied or separated children. Since January this year, nearly 60 children reportedly died while making the 300-kilometre trek from Baghouz to the camp.”
Fore urged member states to take responsibility for children who are their citizens or born to their nationals, and to take measures to prevent children from becoming stateless. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)