AfghanistanNews

Murder, Injuries & Rape: 14,000 ‘Grave Violations’ Against Afghan Kids in 4 Years, UN says

Deteriorating security across Afghanistan in the past four years led to over 14,000 grave violations against children, including nearly 3,500 youngsters killed and over 9,000 injured, according to a United Nations report circulated on Thursday.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned “the alarming level” of grave violations against children by all parties and said he is “deeply disturbed by the scale, severity and recurrence of grave violations endured by the children in Afghanistan.”

According to the report, child casualties from aerial attacks have increased every year since 2015, reversing a downward trend. They totaled 1,049 for the four-year period through 2018.

The secretary-general said the actual number of children recruited and used in the Afghan conflict is estimated to be much higher, citing as an example allegations in 2016 that over 3,000 children were recruited, mainly by armed groups.

Of serious concern, he said, is that the nearly 12,600 children verified to have been killed or injured in 2015-2018 represented almost a third of all civilian casualties. That was an increase of 82 per cent in child casualties compared with the previous four years, he wrote.

Similarly, Guterres said rape and other forms of sexual violence against children is known to be under-reported as a result of prevailing social norms, fear of retaliation and impunity.

The secretary-general said the actual number of children recruited and used in the Afghan conflict is estimated to be much higher, citing as an example allegations in 2016 that over 3,000 children were recruited, mainly by armed groups.

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