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Afghanistan deadliest for children

Afghanistan Deadliest for Children for 5th Consecutive Year

KABUL – Afghanistan was the world’s deadliest conflict for children last year, the fifth consecutive year the country has held that status, a United Nations report said on Monday.
Some 874 children were killed by the conflict in Afghanistan throughout 2019, according to the Children in Armed Conflict report.
They were among the 3,410 children who suffered from “grave violations,” which included maiming, abduction, sexual abuse and attacks at schools and hospitals, the report said.
1,238 casualties were attributed to the Taliban, while pro-government forces were responsible for just under a third of casualties, including 248 that were attributed to international forces.
“I am extremely concerned about the increased number of children killed and maimed by all parties,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in the report.
“I remain concerned about casualties caused by government and international forces, and I urge them to review, strengthen and implement current tactical protocols to prevent [them],” he added.
Despite Afghanistan being the most dangerous, there was still a decrease in casualties from 2018.
The report noted measures taken by international forces to protect Afghan civilians from combat and the decreased number of child casualties from airstrikes.
Steps taken by the Afghan government to prevent child recruitment were also lauded in the report.
However, a combined 64 boys — some as young as 10 — were still recorded as being recruited by the Taliban, Afghan National Police and pro-government militias last year.
The boys were used for combat support and sexual purposes, the report said.
Syria and Yemen followed Afghanistan on the UN annual list.
In reaction to the report, Afghan government in a statement said that it was committed to strengthen the existing mechanisms to prevent such casualties.
(Sahar News)

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