Occupation Of Schools By Security Forces In Myanmar Is A Serious Violation Of Children’s Rights

March 19, 2021

  Joint statement by Save the Children, UNESCO and UNICEF

NEW YORK (March 19, 2021)"The occupation of education facilities across Myanmar by security forces is a serious violation of children’s rights. It will exacerbate the learning crisis for almost 12 million children and youth in Myanmar, which was already under tremendous pressure as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing widespread school closures. Save the Children, UNESCO and UNICEF call on security forces to vacate occupied premises immediately and ensure that schools and educational facilities are not used by military or security personnel.

"As of March 19, security forces have reportedly occupied more than 60 schools and university campuses in 13 states and regions. In at least one incident, security forces reportedly beat two teachers while entering the premises, and left several others injured. Other public institutions including hospitals have also been occupied.

"These incidents mark a further escalation of the current crisis and represent a serious violation of the rights of children. Schools must be not used by security forces under any circumstances. Save the Children, UNESCO and UNICEF remind security forces of their obligation to uphold the rights of all children and youth in Myanmar to education as enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Myanmar Child Rights Law, and the National Education Law and call on them to exercise maximum restraint and end all forms of occupation and interference with education facilities, personnel, students and other public institutions."

 

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About UNICEF
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) works in more than 190 countries and territories to pursue a more equitable world for every child. UNICEF has helped save more children’s lives than any other humanitarian organization, by providing health care and immunizations, safe water and sanitation, nutrition, education, emergency relief and more.

UNICEF USA advances the global mission of UNICEF by rallying the American public to support the world’s most vulnerable children. Together, we are working toward a world that upholds the rights of all children and helps every child thrive. For more information, visit www.unicefusa.org.

 

For more information, contact
Erica Vogel, UNICEF USA, 212.922.2480, evogel@unicefusa.org
Gabby Arias, UNICEF USA, 917.720.1306, garias@unicefusa.org