Better protection of children in conflict-ridden areas is paramount

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The February 13 incident when a village school in Buthidaung Township, Rakhine State was hit by shelling reflects how armed conflict is making life miserable for locals.
Every child has the right to protection, health, education, and fair treatment. For children killed or injured in conflict, these rights are far beyond reach.
We are deeply troubled over the 17 children who were injured in the February 13 incident. We believe that the local authorities have made the best arrangements for the children, who have been admitted to the hospital, and also for their education once they are discharged.
Rakhine State has seen development and the socio-economic life of people has improved in areas where peace prevails, but instability has delayed progress in conflict-ridden areas.
We all need to cooperate and make efforts to ensure peace and stability in all parts of Rakhine State.
As they are the future of our country, our children need to enjoy their rights, including security, development, and protections guaranteed by the Child Rights Law.
The Union Government is focusing on ethnic affairs and internal peace, giving priority to states mostly inhabited by ethnic minorities.
Rakhine is one of the states prioritized by the Union Government for the development of children. However, it would be difficult to bring about the development of children if there is no peace in the areas where they live.
The most important factors for development are peace and rule of law. Hence, the incumbent government is working hard to end armed conflict not only in Rakhine State but also in other parts of the country.
Our country is a Union, and all ethnic people living in the regions and states need to inculcate the Union spirit because we, the people of Myanmar, are the brethren of the Union.
All citizens must foster the spirit of loving peace, and each of their thoughts and physical and verbal actions must lead to peace.
Actions that damage children’s health, education, and psychological well-being will imperil the future of the country. Armed conflicts can delay a country or a state’s recovery. Without decisive action, violence will make lasting casualties of a generation of children in every conflict-ridden area. Better protection of children is paramount now.

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