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Friday 28 October 2016

28 million children driven from home by conflict - UNICEF

Daire Courtney

Published 07/09/2016 | 13:34

A Syrian refugee child (AP)
A Syrian refugee child (AP)

A new UNICEF report claims that nearly 50 million children have been uprooted worldwide and 28 million of those were driven from their homes by conflict and violence.

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Children fleeing conflict or seeking a better life elsewhere face grave dangers on the journey: drowning on sea crossings, kidnapping and trafficking, starvation and even rape and murder.

UNICEF Executive Director said "Indelible images of individual children - Aylan Kurdi's small body washing up on a beach - have shocked the world. But each picture represents many millions of children in danger."

According to the report, children represent about a third of all refugees, and that proportion is growing. More children are crossing borders on their own; the number of unaccompanied child asylum seekers tripled to over 100,000 between 2014 and 2015.

The report also highlights child refugees' lack of access to services and the fact that a refugee child is five times more likely to be out of school than a non-refugee child.

The report urges governments to give all refugee children access to education and healthcare and to prioritise keeping refugee families together for protection of children.

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