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Press releases and news notes

Abducted children

More than 1,000 children in northeastern Nigeria abducted by Boko Haram since 2013
ABUJA/DAKAR/NEW YORK, 13 April 2018 – Since 2013, more than 1,000 children have been abducted by Boko Haram in northeastern Nigeria, including 276 girls taken from their secondary school in the town of Chibok in 2014 – UNICEF said today. Four years on from that tragic incident, more than 100 of the ‘Chibok girls’ have yet to be returned to their families and the UN children’s agency continues to call for their release.

Statement on the release of girls abducted from a school in Dapchi by Mohamed Malick Fall, UNICEF Representative in Nigeria

ABUJA, 21 March 2018 - “UNICEF welcomes news that the girls abducted on 19 February 2018 from a school in Dapchi, Yobe state, northeast Nigeria were returned to their families. According to unconfirmed reports, over 100 girls have been returned.

Children under attack at shocking scale in conflicts around the world, says UNICEF
NEW YORK, 28 December 2017 – Children in conflict zones around the world have come under attack at a shocking scale throughout the year, UNICEF warned today, with parties to conflicts blatantly disregarding international laws designed to protect the most vulnerable.

Lake Chad conflict: alarming surge in number of children used in Boko Haram bomb attacks this year – UNICEF
DAKAR/NEW YORK/GENEVA, 12 April 2017 – The number of children used in ‘suicide’ attacks in the Lake Chad conflict has surged to 27 in the first quarter of 2017, compared to nine over the same period last year, UNICEF said in a new report released today.

Nigeria regional conflict: 10-fold increase in number of children used in ‘suicide’ attacks
DAKAR, Senegal/NEW YORK/GENEVA, 12 April 2016 – The number of children involved in ‘suicide’ attacks in Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger has risen sharply over the past year, from 4 in 2014 to 44 in 2015, according to a UNICEF report released today. More than 75 per cent of the children involved in the attacks are girls. 

Sudan: Children abducted in Abyei released after UN mediation
KHARTOUM, Sudan, 9 April, 2015 – UNICEF confirms that a group of four children recently abducted by an armed group in Abyei has been released.

Children seized from South Sudan school not released yet
JUBA, South Sudan/NAIROBI, Kenya, 28 February 2015 – Scores of children seized by armed men from a village in northern South Sudan two weeks ago remain forcibly recruited as child soldiers, despite intensive efforts to locate and free them.

UNICEF statement on second abduction of Nigerian school girls
DAKAR, Senegal/NEW YORK, 6 May 2014 – “The abduction of eight more girls in Nigeria is an outrage and a worsening nightmare for the girls themselves and for the families of the more than 200 girls who have been stolen from their communities in the last several weeks. 

UNICEF calls for immediate release of abducted school girls in Chibok, Borno State, Nigeria
DAKAR, Senegal/NEW YORK/GENEVA, 16 April 2014 - UNICEF condemns in the strongest possible terms the reported abduction of some 100 school girls between 12 and 17 years old from their school hostel in Chibok Borno State on Monday night, and calls for their immediate and unconditional release.

UNICEF Executive Director, Ann M. Veneman visits Dungu, a community terrorized by the LRA
LONDON, 31 August, 2009 - On the final day of her five-day visit to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman met...

In DRC, unprecedented opportunity to release all children from armed groups
KINSHASA, 27 February 2009 – UNICEF today urged the release of all children currently associated with armed groups in the Democratic...

UNICEF condemns kidnappings of children in Haiti
PORT-AU-PRINCE, 21 December 2006 –UNICEF is alarmed by the increasing number of child kidnappings registered in the past few days in the metropolitan area of Port-au-Prince.

UAE and country delegations review reintegration process of children involved in camel racing
ABU DHABI, 19 September 2006 – The United Arab Emirates Ministry of Interior and UNICEF today jointly stated that in the past twelve months they have helped over one thousand former camel jockeys return to normal childhood.

Statement of UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman on Uganda
NEW YORK/GENEVA/NAIROBI/KAMPALA, 29 August 2006 – UNICEF welcomes the agreement between the Government of Uganda and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) to cease hostilities, which is aimed at ending 20 years of armed conflict.

Japan Provides $6.78 Million to Liberia’s Children
MONROVIA, Liberia, 1 March 2006 - The Government of Japan has contributed US$6.78 million to UNICEF to help provide more than 5,000 demobilized children associated with fighting forces with a basic primary school education or vocational skills training.  The funding will also be used by UNICEF and its partners to provide 300 Liberian schools and 50 health centres with new water and environmental sanitation services.

Lao PDR opens first shelter for women, children
The Lao Women’s Union, with support from UNICEF and other international partners, has opened Lao PDR’s first shelter for women and girls who have suffered abuse through domestic violence or trafficking. 

UNICEF hails world’s first regional agreement on human trafficking
YANGON, MYANMAR, 29 October 2004 – Today ministers from China, Cambodia, Thailand, Lao PDR, Viet Nam and Myanmar signed a landmark memorandum of understanding that sets forth a framework of action to fight human trafficking.

"There should be no hiding place in South Asia for child sex sellers"
COLOMBO, SRI LANKA, 29 September 2004 - Better enforcement against child traffickers and more cross border cooperation by governments in South Asia is being called for by UNICEF.

UNICEF expresses concern over reports of child abduction and trafficking in Afghanistan
KABUL, 25 September 2003 - The United Nations Children’s Fund today expresses its serious concern over reported incidents of abduction and trafficking of children in Afghanistan.

UNICEF deplores increased targeting of children in Somalia
Nairobi, 20 June 2003 - The targeted killing of three girls in Baidoa on Wednesday and the hijacking of a busload of children in Mogadishu last week are abominable acts that require the strongest condemnation by all Somalis, UNICEF Somalia Representative, Jesper Morch, said today.

UNICEF expresses alarm over the fate of captive children
New York, 29 March 2002 -- UNICEF Executive Director Carol Bellamy expressed alarm today over the dangers faced by thousands of abducted girls and boys caught in the midst of a major military offensive that has escalated dramatically in southern Sudan in recent days.

UNICEF fears for Ugandan children as cease-fire collapses
NAIROBI / GENEVA, 30 April 2003 – I am deeply concerned by the recent breakdown of the limited cease-fire in northern Uganda and by reports in the past few days of renewed abductions of children and women by the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA).   (News Note)

UNICEF hails new research on missing children in Sudan
Wednesday, 28 May 2003 – UNICEF praised new research released today by the Rift Valley Institute that shows that over 10,000 children and adults abducted by militia groups in Sudan over the past 20 years are still missing. UNICEF said the new information would make the ongoing search for those still missing “far more effective, far more meaningful, and far more hopeful.” (Press release)




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