Wed 12 Jun 2024 12:04 pm - Jerusalem Time

Israeli army is blacklisted for the first time. UN report: Dangerous levels of violence against children in Gaza

Violence against children caught in conflict reached “dangerous levels” in 2023, with an unprecedented number of deaths and injuries recorded in crises, “including in the Gaza war,” according to a new United Nations report.

The annual United Nations report on “Children and Armed Conflict” noted “a horrific 21 percent increase in serious violations against children under the age of 18 in a range of conflicts, referring to Israel, the Palestinian territories, Sudan, Myanmar, Congo, Burkina Faso, Somalia and Syria.”

For the first time, the United Nations report included Israeli forces on its “blacklist of countries that violate children’s rights by killing and maiming children and attacking schools and hospitals.” It also included for the first time “militants from the Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad movements for their involvement in killing, wounding, and kidnapping children.”

The report of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres, stated that “the surprise attack launched by Hamas last October 7 on southern Israel and the large-scale Israeli military response in Gaza caused a 155 percent increase in grave violations against children, especially resulting from the use of explosive weapons in populated areas in Gaza.

The report indicated that “since 2023, Sudan has witnessed a massive increase of 480 percent in grave violations against children.”

The United Nations blacklisted "the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces for killing and injuring young people and attacking schools and hospitals."

Guterres explained, "By the end of 2023, the United Nations had verified 1,721 serious violations against 1,526 children in Sudan."

“I am appalled by the significant increase in grave violations, especially the recruitment, killing and mutilation of children, as well as sexual violence and attacks on schools and hospitals,” he said.

“The growing civil war in Myanmar has also seen a 123 percent increase in serious violations against children,” the report stated.

The United Nations also included "Myanmar's armed forces, allied militias and seven armed groups on this year's blacklist."

The report stated, “The United Nations verified 2,799 serious violations against 2,093 children, including 238 killings and 623 injuries attributed to the army and militias loyal to it.”

The United Nations verified “30,705 violations against children in 2023, and 2,285 violations committed earlier, affecting more than 15,800 boys and more than 6,250 girls,” and the report stated that “some of them were subjected to multiple violations.”

Guterres explained that the terrible increase in violations is due to “the changing nature, complexity, expansion and intensification of armed conflict, the use of explosive weapons in populated areas, deliberate or indiscriminate attacks on civilians, infrastructure and other essential buildings, as well as the emergence of new armed groups.” , severe humanitarian emergencies, and blatant disregard for international law.”

He also said he was "disturbed by the dramatic increase, unprecedented scale and intensity of grave violations against children in the Gaza Strip, Israel and the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, despite my repeated calls for the parties to take measures to prevent grave violations."

Guterres expressed his "shock at the involvement of the Hamas and Islamic Jihad movements in the mutilation and kidnapping of children on October 7," saying, "Nothing can justify these brutal terrorist acts," noting his "dismay at reports that sexual violence was committed during the attacks, which must be investigated." In which".

He also said that "the scale of the Israeli military campaign against the Hamas and Islamic Jihad movements and the scope of death and destruction in the Gaza Strip was unprecedented," reiterating calls for Israel to "abide by international law and ensure that civilians are not targeted, and that excessive force is not used during law enforcement operations."

The report said, “The year 2023 witnessed 5,698 serious violations against children attributed to Israeli forces, 116 to Hamas, 58 to unknown perpetrators, 51 to Israeli settlers, 21 to Islamic Jihad, 13 to Palestinian individuals, and one violation to the security forces of the Palestinian Authority, while The verification process is still ongoing regarding 2,051 other violations.”

In the Gaza Strip alone, according to the report, the United Nations verified the killing of “2,267 Palestinian children.”

The report also stated that about "9,100 children were killed in the Gaza Strip and that the investigation is still ongoing."

The report pointed out that "about 19,887 Palestinian children were killed or maimed in the Palestinian territories."


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Israeli army is blacklisted for the first time. UN report: Dangerous levels of violence against children in Gaza