UNICEF and the UN Human Rights office call for greater protection from domestic violence for children in the State of Palestine

Joint Statement

15 July 2020

by Etona Ekole, UNICEF Special Representative to the State of Palestine ad interim, and James Heenan, Head of the UN Human Rights Office in the occupied Palestinian territory

EAST JERUSALEM, 15 July 2020 – “UNICEF and the UN Human Rights office were shocked to learn of an incident in the Gaza Strip last week in which a child was killed by a family member in a grave act of domestic violence. Other recent cases of domestic violence against Palestinian children have also involved extremely serious sexual assault. UNICEF and the UN Human Rights office condemn domestic violence against children in all its forms.

“Children have a right to a childhood free from violence, and the ultimate right to life. It is paramount that the Government of the State of Palestine and the de facto authorities in the Gaza Strip put in place strong protection mechanisms and effective safeguards for children. This starts with a zero-tolerance approach to violence against children in any shape or form, irrespective of whether that violence occurs inside the home or family-environment or outside the home, for example, in schools. 

“Those who perpetrated this outrageous act last week must be held to account using formal mechanisms compliant with international standards. Informal mechanisms are not appropriate for dealing with such serious crimes”.

Media contacts

Juliette Touma
Regional Chief of Communications
UNICEF Middle East and North Africa Regional Office
Tel: 00962798674628
Damian Rance
Chief of Communications
UNICEF State of Palestine
Tel: 00972547787604


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