The report, Stolen Futures: The Hidden Toll of Child Casualties in Syria, details the extent to which children are this war's true victims, often deliberately targeted for killing.
Seven out of 10 child deaths have resulted from explosive weapons; 764 children have been summarily executed; 128 have been killed by chemical weapons; 112 were reported to have been tortured, a number that includes infants. Older children have been targeted more frequently than younger ones, and boys age 13-17 are the most frequent victims.
UNICEF has repeatedly called for the protection of children amid the conflict. “Syria’s children have suffered too much, for too long, and will continue to bear the consequences of this crisis for many years to come.” said UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake at the U.N. General Assembly in New York in late September.
The report comes as UNICEF ramps up its efforts to prepare Syria's children for another frigid winter. In mid-November, UNICEF shipped desperately needed supplies for 42,000 people — including blankets and warm children's clothing — into the hard-to-reach area north of war-torn Homs.
“The convoy represents one of the largest deliveries of emergency supplies on a single day across conflict lines in Syria,” says Youssouf Abdel-Jelil, UNICEF Syria Representative. “Many families in this area have been cut off from relief supplies since May 2013.”
UNICEF also worked to prevent the region-wide spread of polio after confirmation of Syria's first outbreak in 14 years. An ongoing vaccination campaign in Syria will reach 1.6 million children, part of a joint UNICEF/WHO effort to vaccinate 20 million children in seven countries and territories.
The numbers of children affected by the war continue to rise: 4,278,000 inside the country and 1,168,996 who are now refugees. Please support UNICEF's efforts to help Syrian children.