Israel and Hamas on UN’s violence against children list


Israel and Hamas have been included for the first time on a United Nations list for violating children’s rights.

The UN’s Children in Armed Conflict said in its annual report that war in Israel and Gaza, as well as in Ukraine and Sudan, led to an unprecedented number of children being killed and injured in 2023.

Israel-Hamas war latest: ‘Massive’ alerts across northern Israel

They said last year saw a “shocking 21% increase in grave violations” against those under the age of 18 across all conflicts, while Israel and Hamas’ war has seen a 155% increase alone.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in the report that Israeli forces were included for the first time over the IDF killing and maiming of children and attacking schools and hospitals.

Hamas, along with Palestinian Islamic Jihad militants, were also included for killing, injuring and abducting children.

In total, the UN report said “some 19,887 Palestinian children were reported killed or maimed” across the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. They add “the reports are pending verification”.

More on Hamas

Israel’s UN envoy Gilad Erdan said last week he had been notified Israel’s military had been added to the list, and said he was “shocked and disgusted by this shameful decision”.

Gaza’s health ministry in Gaza said more than 15,000 children have been killed by Israel since 7 October. Pic: AP

‘Brutal acts of terror’

Writing in the report, Mr Guterres said he is “appalled by the dramatic increase and unprecedented scale and intensity of grave violations against children” in Israel and Palestine.

The UN chief then said he was shocked by Hamas and Islamic Jihad’s targeting of children during the 7 October attacks, adding nothing can justify these “brutal acts of terror” and reports of sexual violence must be investigated.

He then said the scale of Israel’s military campaign against Hamas and Islamic Jihad “and the scope of death and destruction in the Gaza Strip have been unprecedented”.

The report said 5,698 grave violations against children were attributed to Israeli forces last year, while 116 were attributed to Hamas.

Antonio Guterres said he was ‘appalled’ by the ‘unprecedented scale and intensity of grave violations’ in Gaza and Israel. Pic: AP

Another 58 violations were attributed to unidentified perpetrators, as well as 51 to Israeli settlers, 21 to Islamic Jihad, 13 to Palestinian individuals, and one to Palestinian Authority Security Forces.

More than 2,000 other violations against children are still in the process of being verified by the UN.

Israel launched its offensive after the 7 October attacks, where Hamas killed about 1,200 people including 38 children and took 251 hostages including 42 children, according to Israel’s National Council for the Child.

Since then, the Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza said 37,7164 people have been killed by Israeli bombardment and ground attacks, including more than 15,000 children.

Follow Sky News on WhatsApp

Keep up with all the latest news from the UK and around the world by following Sky News

Tap here

Russia and Sudan on list

The UN also kept the Russian armed forces, along with its affiliated armed groups fighting Ukraine, on the blacklist for a second year.

It verified the killing of 80 Ukrainian children and maiming of 419 others by Russia last year, with most incidents caused by explosive weapons.

Meanwhile, Sudan saw “a staggering 480% increase in grave violations against children” last year after war broke out between rival generals.

The Sudanese Armed Forces went on the UN blacklist for killing and injuring youngsters and attacking schools and hospitals.

The rival paramilitary Rapid Support Forces were included for the same, as well as for recruiting and using children in military operations and for rape and sexual violence.

Read more:
Israel hit school while ‘targeting Hamas’
Israeli war cabinet member quits
Hamas ‘ready to work’ with ceasefire plan

Sky News found last month nearly 200 Sudanese settlements were hit by fires since the start of the conflict.

To get off the blacklist, government forces and armed groups must develop an “action plan” to address the violations and then implement it.

Mr Guterres welcomed an offer by the Israeli government on 28 May to engage with UN special representative for children in armed conflict Virginia Gamba to develop an action plan.

Articles You May Like

Trump speaks about assassination attempt – for first and last time
Johnson over Bears’ potential: ‘It’s about action’
Could Wales ban mobile phones from its schools?
Bitcoin surges but big tech has reason to fear JD Vance
Mercedes-Benz High-Power Charging goes large at Starbucks