The State of Qatar reiterated its commitment to protecting children in armed conflicts and its support for international efforts to achieve this goal and stressed that it will spare no effort to support those efforts to protect children in all circumstances and by all means and to provide an environment conducive to their development in safe and healthy conditions, enabling them to develop their capabilities to become creators of a future of peace, security and prosperity for all the peoples of the world.
This came in a statement delivered at the UN headquarters in New York by Acting Charge d’affaires of the State of Qatar to the United Nations Abdulrahman Yacoub Al Hammadi, at the UN Security Council’s official meeting on “Children and armed conflict: Protecting children today prevents conflicts tomorrow”.
Al Hammadi expressed the State of Qatar’s concern about the statistics contained in the latest report of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, which indicated a significant increase in the number of violations against children in the context of armed conflict in 2017, despite the important progress noted in the report on the promotion of child protection, and continuing violations against children in many regions of the world.
Al Hammadi added that the protection of children and the guarantee of their rights were important and should be given special attention in dealing with the situations considered by the Security Council in our region and elsewhere.
The Acting Charge d’affaires of the State of Qatar to the United Nations appealed to the international community to shoulder the collective responsibility to redouble efforts and take further decisive action to deal with this issue as an integral part of any comprehensive strategy for conflict prevention and resolution, and the establishment of a sustainable peace that ensures that children are not deprived of the “layers” of protection afforded to them by the family, society and the law, welcoming the development of a practical guide on mainstreaming child protection issues into peace processes.
Al Hammadi announced the participation of the State of Qatar in organizing the first international conference on youth participation in peace tracks in partnership with Finland and Colombia in cooperation with the Office of the Secretary-Generals Envoy on Youth to be held in Helsinki in December 2018.
He also stressed the firm belief of the State of Qatar that children and young people have the keys to peace and security, and are the hope of the future and the importance of investing in the protection and education of these two groups, especially the children. He said that based on our conviction that the right to education does not fall due to armed conflict, the State of Qatar has attached great importance to ensuring the provision of education to children in emergencies, especially in situations of armed conflict, and in this regard Qatar established Education Above All foundation and other State-sponsored educational initiatives and programs in cooperation with international organizations.
He pointed to the great achievement of Education Above All foundation in partnership with UNICEF and more than 80 global partners in providing quality education to 10 million children deprived of school in more than 50 countries around the world, including those affected by armed conflicts, which was announced by HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser Chairperson of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), during the ceremony held in New York last April.
Al Hammadi added that as part of Qatar’s commitment to protecting education in emergencies, it was among the first countries to ratify Oslo Safe Schools Declaration, the State of Qatar recognizes the close link between the protection of the rights and empowerment of children and young people and the issue of conflict prevention, Qatar has given great importance to the creation of employment opportunities for young people in the development and relief policies implemented by the State at the national, regional and international levels.
In September 2017, the State of Qatar signed a memorandum of understanding with the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism and Silatech Foundation in Qatar to enhance youth employability, build capacity and launch projects to prevent violent extremism.
At the end of the statement, Al Hammadi welcomed the resolution adopted by the UN Security Council for the protection of children in armed conflict, pointing out that the State of Qatar adopts this resolution as it reflects the principles it is keen to protect children in armed conflict and is in line with its priorities in this field, and would support international efforts to that end.
Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs