In the annual report on Children and Armed Conflict for the year 2022, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres highlighted distressing figures regarding grave violations against children in Syria.
According to the report, a staggering 2,438 grave violations were documented in Syria during 2022, impacting at least 2,407 children. These violations encompassed forced military recruitment, the use of child soldiers, killings, maiming, sexual violence, attacks on schools and hospitals, and kidnappings.
The report revealed that 711 children lost their lives or were maimed, with 307 children killed and 404 suffering from severe injuries. Syria ranked as the fourth worst country worldwide for such killings and maiming, following Ukraine, Afghanistan, and Somalia.
Another deeply alarming finding was the recruitment and utilization of 1,696 child soldiers in Syria, with a concerning 1,688 children being forced into combat roles. This made Syria the worst country globally in terms of child soldier recruitment and deployment.
The report also documented the arrest of two children, one by the Assad regime and the other by the PYD militia. Furthermore, by the end of 2022, over 600 children, including foreign children, remained in detention in northeastern Syria.
Syria ranked fourth, preceded only by Congo, the Israeli occupation of Palestine, and Somalia, in terms of the number of violations. Moreover, it ranked second after Congo in terms of the sheer number of children affected by these grave violations.
(Source: SOC’s Media Department)