At least 27,180 grave violations committed against children caught up in wars in 26 conflict situations were reported between the months of January to December 2022, making this the highest number ever verified by the UN.
This was revealed by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) for Children and Armed Conflict, Virginia Gamba, during the United Nations Security Council open debate on children and armed conflict on 5 July 2023.
The annual report on children and armed conflict indicated that 8,890 suffered these violations, some by more than one type. Around 8,630 children were either killed or maimed, 7,622 were recruited and used in combat, and 3,985 were abducted.
Further, it stated 2,496 children were deprived of liberty for their actual or alleged association with parties to the conflict, mostly through detention, where they can face further physical, sexual, and psychological violence. There were attacks on 1,163 schools and 647 hospitals.
According to the report, most violations took place in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), Somalia, Ukraine, and Syria.
Armed groups accounted for almost 50 percent of perpetrators of grave violations, but in some cases, the perpetrators were government armed and security forces, such as in the killing and maiming of children, attacks on schools and hospitals, and even in the denial of humanitarian access.