Children have a fundamental right to be protected, wherever they live. Children affected by conflict are among the most vulnerable to abuse, exploitation, violence and neglect and most in need of protection, yet there is limited commitment to prioritise children's protection. The data below reveals a crisis in funding for child protection.
The UN Security Council set out in 1999 the following six grave violations against children in conflict; killing & miming of children; recruitment and use of children by armed forces or groups; abductions of children; attacks on schools or hospitals; denial of humanitarian aid; rape and other sexual violence against children.
In 2021, approximately 1.6 billion children – more than two-thirds of children globally – were living in a conflict affected country, meaning in a country where conflict incidents have occurred. Out of these children, as many as 230 million lived in high-intensity conflict, which means they lived in conflict affected countries with more than 1,000 battle related deaths over the year.
In collaboration with the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) we have calculated how many children live 50km or closer to armed conflicts where at least one conflict actor has been reported to perpetrate recruitment against children in a given year. The data below show an estimated 337 million children live at risk of recruitment in all armed conflicts in the world.
In collaboration with the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) we have calculated how many children live 50km or closer to armed conflicts where at least one conflict actor have perpetrated sexual violence against children in a given year. Our analysis shows that the number of children at risk of sexual violence committed by conflict actors is almost ten times higher today than in 1990.
Using research from the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) and Save the Children's own analysis of the UN’s data on grave violations in 2018, we have identified the ten worst conflict-affected countries for children. The assessment is based on: prevalence of the six grave violations against children in conflict; conflict intensity measured by the number of recorded casualties; total child population living in conflict zones; share of children living in conflict zones.
|3||Democratic Republic of Congo|
|7||Central African Republic|