Afghan children main victims of war: UNSC

By: Suraya Raiszada

The UNSC authorities have said that Afghan children are the main victims of ongoing war in Afghanistan and at present over one million children are deprived of access to education.
Afghanistan assistant permanent representative to the UNSC Wali Naimi said, in the first six months of 2019 over 1200 children have been killed or injured. According to available reports, 327 children killed and 888 children injured mostly during recent attacks in Kabul, Kandahar, Logar and Nangarhar provinces.
The UN officials added, since 2018 no underaged individuals have been employed by ANSDF as the Afghan government has been making efforts to prevent employment of underaged individuals. For instance, in 2018 recruiting of over 1009 underaged individuals were prevented by ANSDF.
Naimi emphasized that the name of Afghanistan must be withdrawn from the list of those countries in which children are being recruited by military-security forces and sent to battlefields.
NATO envoy to the UN said that within RS mission NATO tries to distinguish protection of children to ANSF authorities during training, advice and assistance operations.
He added, the NATO is committed to support and protect Afghan children beside train, advice and assist. We have always emphasized that civilian casualties particularly children should be prevented.
In its recent report, UNAMA has expressed concern on increasing civilian particularly children casualties in Afghanistan and asked the warring sides to refrain damaging civilians during clashes. Based on UNAMA report, over 80 children have been killed during recent attacks.
UNAMA report has added that the warring parties should make sure on their commitments according to international laws and avoid direct attacks on civilian targets.
The armed insurgents are using children in most of their attacks and exploit them as a human shield. As in recent suicide attacks, majority of attackers had been children.
The UN human rights commission and AIHRC have also expressed strong concern on existence of children in the battlefields.
Obliging itself to observe international laws and conventions on children rights and protection, the Afghan government has always said that use of children in wars is a crime and is liable to be punished.
Prior to this, the MoI authorities had said that terrorist groups use Afghan children and teenages in the battlefields and MoI has so far launched different campaigns to prevent recruitment of children.
The AIHRC has asked terrorists to refrain use of children in armed conflicts and respect international humanitarian laws. A number of experts believe that continuation of war in Afghanistan has caused our citizen specially children to be one of the most vulnerable strata and have given more sacrifices. Political analyst Ali Rahmani said, recruitment of Afghan children in the battlefields is taking place not only by Afghan insurgents but also other governments. He added, Iranian authorities sent Afghan children to Syria war that was strongly condemned by UNICEF. 

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