‘Children Should Never Be Targeted by Violence… Those Responsible Must Be Held Fully Accountable’

Human Wrongs Watch

Reacting to a recent upsurge in violent attacks affecting children, Virginia Gamba, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, on 17 August 2018 called for those responsible to be held fully accountable.

© UNICEF/Kamal Ayyashi | On 9 June 2018 in Yemen, an injured girl is being treated at Althawra Hospital in Hudaydah. She was injured along with her brothers and her uncle, while the family was trying to relocate farther from the fighting that same day in Aljah area, Bait Alfaqih district, Hudaydah.

The last two weeks have seen a suicide attack on an education centre in Afghanistan which killed and injured young students in class, 21 children killed in Yemen when their school bus was hit by an airstrike, and ongoing child casualties in Syria – particularly in the conflict zones of Idlib and Western Aleppo in the North of the country.

Children should never be targeted by violence. – Virginia Gamba, UN Envoy

“Children have been directly targeted by belligerents. They were also collateral victims of despicable acts of war,” said Ms. Gamba. “We cannot remain silent in the face of such atrocities”, she said, adding that she wanted those fighting to understand the “simple message: enough is enough.”

She went on to urge all sides in conflicts to protect children from the scourge of war and to respect their obligations under international humanitarian law.

“Children should never be targeted by violence. It is our collective responsibility to use these tools to their full extent and to obtain results for those boys and girls who desperately need protection.”

Following the deadly air strike in Yemen last week, UN Secretary-General António Guterres urged an “independent and prompt investigation”, adding that warring parties must take “constant care to spare civilians”.

In recent days several UN Agencies have strongly condemned the attacks. The UN Children’s Fund UNICEF described them as a “war on children”, whilst the UN Human Rights Office OHCHR, pointed out that the Yemen strike was just the latest example of the children being killed in the country’s violent years-long conflict. (SOURCE: UN).


Read also:

‘War on Children’ in Syria and Yemen ‘Must Stop’ – UNICEF

‘Unconscionable Attack on Children Should Be Turning Point in Yemen’s Brutal War – Enough Is Enough’

‘Children Are Killed or Seriously Injured in Palestinian-Administered Areas; Exposed to Fear, Trauma, and Grave Injuries in Israel’ – UN Officials

The ‘Used and Abused’ Children of Syria Must Learn What ‘Peace’ Really Means – Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict

Gaza: ‘The Well-Being of Two Million People, Half of Whom Are Children’ at Stake as Emergency Fuel Runs Dry – UN Humanitarian Coordinator

‘Children Make Up almost a Third of Human Trafficking Victims Worldwide; Women and Girls Comprise 71 Per Cent of All Victims’

Impact of Sanctions and Boycotts on Children

History Redux – The Separation of Children and Families

2018 Human Wrongs Watch

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