(MENAFN- The Peninsula)
Qatar underlined that protecting the rights of children to education in times and areas of conflict requires in the first place protecting education itself by preventing the targeting of educational facilities, noting that celebrating the International Day to Protect Education from Attack draws attention to the suffering of millions of children in countries experiencing humanitarian crises and their need for urgent support.
This came in the speech of the Qatar delivered by First Secretary of the Permanent Mission of the State of Qatar in Geneva Abdullah Maqbool Al Ali (pictured), on behalf of a number of countries, during the General Debate under the third item on the agenda of the Human Rights Council, on the occasion of the International Day to Protect Education from Attack.
Al Ali stated that Sept. 9 marks the second anniversary of the celebration of the“International Day to Protect Education from Attack” which was established by the United Nations General Assembly by a unanimous adoption of Resolution 74/275 submitted by the State of Qatar and co-sponsored by 62 countries.
He said that this historic resolution, which reaffirms the right to education for all and the importance of ensuring safe and conducive learning environments in humanitarian emergencies, besides providing quality education at all levels, including for girls, will undoubtedly facilitate the joint efforts of UN Member States and entities and other relevant stakeholders to work together to ensure access to education in humanitarian emergencies and especially during armed conflicts.
He noted that this year's celebration comes to emphasize that education is a key tool for achieving peace, a key right and an enabler for the enjoyment of all other human rights, and a basic pillar and strategic objective of the Sustainable Development Goals whose implementation depends on the implementation of many other sustainable development goals.
He said that although the last academic year was one of the most challenging years for both teachers and students due to coronavirus pandemic, this year also witnessed a continuation of violence and attacks against schools in the context of the armed conflicts that still exist, which doubled the suffering of students and made it more difficult for them to get education.
According to statistics from the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attacks, the year 2020 witnessed more than 2,400 attacks on educational facilities, students and teachers, an increase of 33 percent since 2019. At this moment when the world is striving hard to get out of this devastating crisis, education must be put at the center recovery efforts, in order to ensure return to the right track and restore the achievements that have been affected by the pandemic, Al Ali added.
Al Ali stressed the importance of sparing schools, universities and all educational facilities from the scourge of war and recognizing and protecting their civilian nature and not targeting them, so that they always remains safe havens to promote peace, development and stability.
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