Statement by UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake on impact of violence on children in Gaza and Israel
NEW YORK, 13 July 2014 - Children are bearing the brunt of the worsening violence in Gaza and Israel with at least 33 children killed in Gaza in recent days, and hundreds more injured.
No child should have to suffer the terrifying impact of such violence.
The violence is taking a shocking toll on children both physically and psychologically, with alarming consequences for future chances of peace, stability and understanding. Too often children who witness such violence, and come to view it as "normal", are likely to repeat it themselves in later life.
UNICEF staff on the ground have spoken with families who describe the deep emotional impact that the current violence is having on children - children who are not sleeping or who are having nightmares, children who have stopped eating, and children who are exhibiting harrowing signs of mental distress.
With the possibility of a further escalation in violence, UNICEF joins the Security Council in calling on all sides to urgently exercise maximum restraint and for the protection of civilians - not only for the sake of peace, but for sake of the children who are suffering the worst of this current violence.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. For more information about UNICEF and its work, visit: www.unicef.org
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