At a glance: State of Palestine


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This map does not reflect a position by UNICEF on the legal status of any country or territory or the delimitation of any frontiers.

Armed conflict continues to kill dozens of children each year in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.

Poverty has dramatically worsened since 2000; access to jobs, schools, and medical care is hampered by hundreds of checkpoints and roadblocks.

In Gaza half of the population is under age 18, making efforts on behalf of children especially urgent.

Issues facing children in the Occupied Palestinian Territory

  • The Occupied Palestinian Territory has been polio-free since the mid-1990s.  Immunization rates are above 90 per cent for major vaccine-preventable diseases. But many families and communities still lack the knowledge and means to prevent common childhood diseases.
  • Landmines and other unexploded ordnance are an ongoing threat to children.
  • Chronic malnutrition affects nearly 10 per cent of children under age five. The situation is most acute in Gaza, where 50,000 children are malnourished. About half of children under age two are anaemic and 70 per cent have vitamin A deficiency.
  • Approximately 10 per cent of girls ages 15 to 18 are pregnant or already have a child.
  • Violence against children is a problem in homes and schools. An estimated one fifth of children have experienced violence at the hands of family members.
  • Children in nearly a third of all families experience anxiety, phobia or depression.
  • School enrolment is high, but it is starting to decline. The quality of education is also suffering because schools lack textbooks and other materials. Nearly half of all students have seen their school besieged by troops, and more than 10 per cent have witnessed the killing of a teacher in school.

Activities and results for children

  • Partnering with the Ministry of Health, UNICEF has vaccinated 650,000 children against measles, mumps and rubella, and provided supplemental polio inoculations for 88,000 children.
  • UNICEF delivered emergency health and obstetric kits to 1.2 million people and trained health-care personnel to provide quality medical services.
  • Six thousand families received water kits to help prevents outbreaks of diarrhoeal diseases.
  • To combat malnutrition, UNICEF and its partners raised awareness of the importance of breastfeeding and advocated for flour fortification and salt iodization.
  • UNICEF and its partners provided educational materials for 90,000 students.  More than 900 school-in-a-box kits allowed 70,000 children to continue their education even when barricades prevented them from reaching their primary schools.
  • More than 50,000 children received psychosocial counselling that will help them cope with violence. Nearly 25,000 caregivers were trained to treat distressed children.
  • UNICEF and its partners provided mine-risk education to 20,000 children.



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