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United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
4 April 2008
UNICEF Humanitarian Action Update: OPT 4 Apr 2008
UNICEF'S EMERGENCY PROGRAMMES FOCUS ON HEALTH, EDUCATION, CHILD PROTECTION AND ADOLESCENT DEVELOPMENT
- In February, there were no stocks of 85 out of 416 essential drugs in Gaza.
- Water and sanitation systems suffer from chronic shortages and limited networks.
- Across the West Bank, schools have fallen behind on the curriculum due to school days lost to military operations, closures, and curfews.
- Many children suffer from trauma and present symptoms of stress and anxiety.
2008 has offered little promise for children thus far.
At least 33 children were killed in conflict-related violence between 27 February and 3 March. In January, an Israeli missile targeting the Ministry of Interior in Gaza injured 26 children attending a nearby wedding. In Nablus, at least 18 children were injured in the largest full-scale military operation since February 2007. As of mid-March, 39 children had died in conflict, compared with 10 children over the same period last year.
Gaza has been almost entirely sealed off since June 2007. Over one million dollars of UNICEF supplies including critically-needed pumps and accessories to operate water and sewage treatment facilities, as well as computers and photocopiers for schools, have been barred from entering Gaza for months. In February, 1,782 truckloads of goods were allowed into Gaza, an 86% decline from last year.
Across the West Bank, the closure regime is tighter than ever, with 580 obstacles to movement in February 2008, up from 376 when the Access and Movement Agreement was signed in November 2005. At least 57 structures including 25 inhabited buildings were demolished in the West Bank in January, the highest number since February 2006, when 64 structures (6 inhabited), were destroyed. The 723-km separation barrier is 57% complete.
UNICEF's programmes focus on health, education, child protection and adolescent development, targeting communities where the needs are greatest. This support is needed more than ever to help prevent further deterioration in children's well-being.
Details of the occupied Palestinian Territories' emergency programme can be obtained from:
Patricia McPhillips Special Representative UNICEF oPt Tel: +972 5830013 Fax: +972 25830806 email@example.com
Esther Vigneau UNICEF EMOPS Geneva Tel: + 41 22 909 5612 Fax: + 41 22 909 5902 firstname.lastname@example.org
Gary Stahl UNICEF PFO New York Tel: + 1-212 326 7009 Fax: + 1-212 326 7165 email@example.com
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