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UNICEF: More than 12 million Children in Need of Urgent Humanitarian Assistance

UNICEF: More than 12 million Children in Need of Urgent Humanitarian Assistance

[20/November/2019]

SANAA, Nov. 20 (Saba) - Despite the historic gains made for children since the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child 30 years ago by the UN General Assembly, Yemen remains among the worst countries for children in the world, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) said.

UNICEF said that the continuation of the bloody conflict and the resulting economic crisis have put the basic social services systems across Yemen on the brink of collapse, with far-reaching consequences for children, in a statement received by Saba.

"Today, there are more than 12 million children — almost every child — in Yemen who need urgent humanitarian assistance," the statement said.

In 1991, Yemen ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child, making it one of the first countries in the world to commit to improving children's rights in the country and reporting on progress.

"The 30th anniversary of the Convention should serve as a clear reminder to all of us to commit once again and urgently to our responsibilities to help Yemen's children survive and grow in a safe and peaceful environment," said UNICEF Representative in Yemen Sara Beysolow Nyanti.

Many children had been killed by the war as a result of open attacks, while playing outdoors with their friends, on their way to or from school, or while safely at home with their families.

On November 20th, to mark the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child in Yemen, UNICEF is organizing sports activities for boys and girls in all provinces of Yemen to highlight the right to play as an important aspect of a child's physical and mental development, Nyanti said.

"Every day we strive to fulfill our promise to meet the needs and help achieve the rights of Yemeni children, but the purest form of childhood — play — is often ignored," she said.

"Sports activities organized by UNICEF and its partners mean that children can meet, without fear of being attacked, to play together across the country," Nyanti said.

"We have also asked all parties to the conflict to exercise restraint and to allow a day of calm on November 20th so that children can play without fear of any attack, although this does not end their daily suffering, but it shows the possibility of achieving a peaceful future in Yemen," she said.

The UNICEF representative saw this symbolic gesture as an opportunity to remind the world of the children of Yemen, who continue to bear the brunt of the ongoing conflict.

UNICEF and its partners continue to provide life-saving services to children in the areas of health, nutrition, water and sanitation, as well as child protection services. Only peace can provide a lasting solution to the deteriorating humanitarian crisis and alleviate the situation of children.

Eman

 


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