UNICEF: 59 Palestinian children killed in 2018 and 3,472 injured

In 2018, 59 Palestinian children were killed and 3,472 injured, while 200 Palestinians were arrested each month, according to a report by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).

In a statement quoted by the official agency, the organization said that the Middle East and North Africa region has seen remarkable progress in children's rights, despite conflict, inequality and poverty.

"Since the adoption of the agreement, the Middle East and North Africa has seen remarkable progress in children's rights," Said Ted Cheban, FAO's Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa," Ted Cheban, the organization's regional director for the Middle East and North Africa, told a press conference marking the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

He added that this progress came "despite problems related to governance, inequality, poverty and conflict".
According to UNICEF, extreme poverty continues to affect 29 million children in the region, while nearly half of its children live in "moderate poverty" and suffer deprivation of basic rights.

Conflicts in the region in 2018 killed 1,190 children and injured 1,847, while 1,272 were arrested.

"There is currently near-universal coverage of vaccination against diseases, improved basic health care, water and sanitation treatment, resulting in a reduction of more than two-thirds of child mortality," Cheban said.

"There were 65 deaths under the age of 5 per 1,000 children born in 1990, which today fell below 21," he said.

More children go to school than ever before, and more than 90 percent of the region's children have access to clean drinking water and sanitation, he said.

"There are 175 million children in the region under the age of 18, 25 million of whom live in conflict countries, a significant figure," Sheban said.

Cheban urged the international community to provide basic rights for children in the region as well as "dignity".

"They demand quality education, clean water, electricity, sustainable access to the Internet, living in clean cities and villages ... asking for jobs, hearing their voices, and freeing them from abuse and exploitation," he said.

"In short, what they are asking for is dignity, living with dignity. These demands are certainly not much, and we all have a duty to make them real."

According to UNICEF, there are 6 million displaced children in the Middle East and North Africa, and 6.3 million are refugee children.

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