The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) urged to accelerate the adoption of the Safe Schools Declaration in Ukraine, particularly, in the context of the war in the east of Ukraine. Due to the Donbas Conflict, children and teachers at 3,500 educational institutions face risks almost every day as the UNICEF reported.
“With the conflict in eastern Ukraine extending into its seventh year, children and teachers in 3,500 educational facilities are currently affected by the ongoing violence and remain at risk. The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is calling for the implementation of the Safe School Declaration in Ukraine to be accelerated,” the message said.
It is noted that over 750 schools and kindergartens were damaged or destroyed since the beginning of the combat actions. A lot of other educational facilities were forced to stop the education process due to the intensified attacks. Almost 400,000 children go to a school situated near the demarcation line, where attacks and extreme mine contamination threaten their life and wellbeing.
Moreover, during the previous school year, 19 attacks on schools were observed; five of them took place in April 2020. During one of the incidents, a 17-year-old girl was injured by shrapnel in the schoolyard.
UNICEF reminds that in November 2019, Ukraine became the 100th country that signed the Safe Schools Declaration and took a commitment to assume particular measures to protect the students, teachers, and educational facilities during the armed conflict.
Earlier, citing the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) reported that from April 2014 until July 31, 2020, from 13,100 up to 13,300 people died in Donbas.