Following reports of children injured when their school was hit by mortar fire in northern Rakhine state, Myanmar, on Thursday, Save the Children has issued the following statement:
Duncan Harvey, National Director for Save the Children in Myanmar, said:
“Our thoughts are with the children and their families impacted by this horrible incident. Save the Children strongly condemns all forms of violence against children in conflict situations. Children who have nothing to do with this conflict are being put at the heart of it - and this has to stop.
“It is not just our moral obligation to make sure children are safe and secure, but a legal one too. All the warring parties in Myanmar have a duty under international law to make sure children are protected and schools are kept out of the line of fire.
For a child in conflict, school provides access to a safe space to learn, protection from risks such as violence, child marriage, and recruitment into armed groups - and provides a crucial sense of routine and calm. Save the Children calls on all parties to take firm action to protect education from attack by holding those responsible to account.
“This comes on the day Save the Children has launched its report ‘Stop the War on Children’, which focusses on the 415 million children living in conflict worldwide. Attacks on schools is one of the six grave violations against children and this is yet another tragic indication that conflict is intensifying for children.”