Rising violence in central Sahel having devastating impact on children: UNICEF
UNITED NATIONS, Jan. 28 (Xinhua) — The surge in armed violence across Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger is having a devastating impact on children’s survival, education, protection and development, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) warned on Tuesday.
The agency reported that a surge in violence in the central Sahel region in Africa means nearly 5 million children will need humanitarian assistance this year, up from 4.3 million in 2019.
According to the report, children have been attacked, abducted or recruited into armed groups due to the spike in armed conflict and insecurity in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger. Since the start of 2019, more than 670,000 children across the region have been forced to flee their homes because of armed conflict and insecurity.
The UNICEF called for “renewed, increased and concerted efforts” to curb the ongoing violence and to stop it from spreading into neighbouring countries.
The UN agency has appealed for 208 million U.S. dollars to support operations on the ground, where it is working with partners in the areas of protection, education, health, nutrition, and water and sanitation.