WiredGov Newswire (news from other organisations)
UNICEF - Dr Congo: Children killed, injured, abducted, and face sexual violence in conflict at record levels for third consecutive year
The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is on track to have record levels of verified grave violations against children for a third consecutive year in 2023.
Intensifying violence, massive displacement, and proximity of armed groups to communities are leading to an alarming increase in cases of killing, maiming, and abduction of children in DRC. If trends continue, the country is on track to reach new highs since the United Nations Monitoring and Reporting mechanism started in 2005, and surpassing records set in 2022.
“I met children who survived the horrors of recruitment and use by armed groups and the unspeakable trauma of sexual violence – atrocities that no one should experience, let alone children,” said Sheema Sen Gupta, UNICEF’s Director of Child Protection, during a week-long mission to DRC. “These harrowing stories underscore the urgency for the government to intensify its efforts to safeguard civilians – especially the most vulnerable, the country’s children – and actions needed from partners and donors to be able to scale up our prevention and response activities.”
Latest data shows there has been a 41 per cent increase in the number of verified grave violations against children in the first half of 2023 compared to the same period a year ago. There were 3,377 grave violations against 2,420 children in all of 2022, according to the June 2023 Children and Armed Conflict – Report of the Secretary-General.
Recruitment and use of children in armed groups has spiked by 45 per cent in the first six months of the year. In 2022, 1,545 children – some as young as 5 years old – were verified as having been recruited and used by armed groups. Killing and maiming of children was up 32 per cent in the same period, compared to 699 cases last year.
Rape and other acts of sexual violence against children and abduction of children are also on an upward trajectory. In both 2021 and 2022, DRC had the world’s highest levels of verified cases of sexual violence against children committed by armed forces and armed groups. Moreover, in 2022, 730 children were verified as abducted, making it the highest number of abductions ever verified by the United Nations in the DRC.
“This violence is unacceptable. We call on all parties to the conflict to take measures to prevent and end all grave violations against children,” added Sen Gupta.
Since violence flared in October 2022, 1.5 million people have been forced to flee for their lives in eastern DRC, taking them away from their homes, livelihoods and communities, and children away from their schools. There is a total of 6.1 million displaced people in eastern DRC.
In response to increasing violations and the urgent needs, UNICEF has provided more than 100,000 children with mental health and psychosocial support services and has assisted more than 6,300 survivors of gender-based violence since the beginning of the year. Despite that, UNICEF has received only 11 per cent of funds required for its child protection response under UNICEF’s emergency appeal in eastern DRC, meaning most needs are going unmet.
Notes to Editor:
Download multimedia content here.
For further information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across more than 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone.
The UK Committee for UNICEF (UNICEF UK) raises funds for UNICEF’s emergency and development work for children. We also promote and protect children’s rights in the UK and internationally. We are a UK charity, entirely funded by supporters.
United Kingdom Committee for UNICEF (UNICEF UK), Registered Charity No. 1072612 (England & Wales), SC043677 (Scotland).
Latest News from
WiredGov Newswire (news from other organisations)
LGA responds to Sport England's Active Lives Children and Young People survey08/12/2023 12:05:00
We urgently need a strategic approach across government departments to identify and tackle the barriers to children and young people and the least active groups to increase their activity levels.
NHS Confederation - Latest urgent and emergency care situation report shows rising winter virus levels08/12/2023 11:05:00
Rory Deighton warns that the upcoming junior doctors strike could exacerbate winter pressures.
Use Scottish Budget to back business and jumpstart growth - CBI Scotland08/12/2023 10:05:00
Against a backdrop of high costs, low demand, and sluggish productivity, CBI Scotland has urged the Scottish Government to use the forthcoming Scottish Budget to ramp-up business confidence and investment in a bid to get Scotland growing again.
Only half of young people able to identify correct definition of climate change – UNICEF, Gallup08/12/2023 09:05:00
Most children and young people say they have heard of climate change but only half understand what it is, according to a new UNICEF-Gallup poll, as world leaders gather at this year’s COP28.
CBI - John Edwards speaks at TechUK Digital Ethics Summit 202307/12/2023 10:25:00
John Edwards speaks at TechUK Digital Ethics Summit 2023
NHS Confederation responds to announcement of fresh wave of junior doctor strikes06/12/2023 14:25:00
Matthew Taylor said the new strikes will be a disappointing blow to NHS leaders.
NHS Confederation - Plans to introduce the most significant public health intervention in a generation and phase out smoking are progressing at pace, as the government’s consultation closes today.06/12/2023 13:25:00
Welsh NHS Confederation director Darren Hughes responds to Health Inspectorate Wales' Annual Report.
LGA - Section 114 fear for almost 1 in 5 council leaders and chief executives after cashless Autumn Statement06/12/2023 11:25:00
Almost one in five council leaders and chief executives in England surveyed by the Local Government Association think it is very or fairly likely that their chief finance officer will need to issue a Section 114 notice this year or next due to a lack of funding to keep key services running.
CBI responds to Government’s latest immigration proposals05/12/2023 16:05:00
CBI yesterday responded to Government’s latest immigration proposals.