Minister of State for International Cooperation Highlights Parts of Qatar’s Initiatives to Protect Children in Armed Conflicts

HE Minister of State for International Cooperation at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Lolwah bint Rashid Al Khater presented part of Qatar’s initiatives to protect children in armed conflicts during a regional meeting on preventing grave violations against children in armed conflicts, hosted by Doha today via videoconferencing technology.

In a speech during the meeting’s second session titled “Regional best practices on preventing grave violations against children in armed conflicts”, Her Excellency said the State of Qatar is proud of its experience in mediation to resolve armed conflicts by peaceful means in accordance with the principles of justice and international law. Qatar was able to end many armed conflicts and achieve peace, and it continues this role in other armed conflicts, she added.

Qatar, she said, is also proud that it initiated the submission of a draft resolution to the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly entitled “International Day to Protect Educational Institutions from Attacks”. The draft resolution stipulates that September 9 of each year be considered a global day to protect education from attacks, and urges the international community to alleviate the ordeal of students affected by armed conflict. The draft resolution was adopted unanimously and the day was marked on September 9, 2022 for the third year.

HE the Minister of State for International Cooperation at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs referred to Qatar’s partnerships with regional organizations and many international partners to enhance the protection of children affected by conflict.

In this context, she noted the Qatar Fund for Development’s provision of permanent support to the Office of UN Special Representative of Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, in addition to Qatar’s support to establish and finance the Analysis and Communication Center of the Office of the Special Representative in Doha in order to support mediation and capacity-building to end and prevent grave violations against children in armed conflict.

Her Excellency also noted many initiatives launched by the State of Qatar to support international peace and security, including but not limited to its hosting in 2021 of approximately 260 Afghan minors during the process of evacuating Afghan citizens to the State of Qatar and then to their final destinations. During the period of their stay in the country, alternative care and psychological and social support were given to them, she said.

In a related context, Her Excellency referred to the Education Above All Foundation initiative Educate a Child which provided education to ten million children in developing countries affected by armed conflict, and the Women in Conflict Zones Initiative 2022 launched by the Qatar Fund for Development with the aim of supporting and empowering women and girls in the regions that witness conflicts and wars around the world.

At the bilateral level, the first international conference on Afghan women’s education was organized in the city of Bali and co-chaired by the Republic of Indonesia and the State of Qatar, she said.

HE the Minister of State for International Cooperation at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs also referred to the Quest initiative launched by the Qatar Fund for Development to support Syrians affected by the conflict inside and outside Syria in 2016.

Currently, the State of Qatar chairs the main group of the support platform dedicated to the solutions strategy for Afghan refugees (SSAR), she said, noting that there are many other initiatives and efforts, all of which stem from Qatar’s strategic vision in supporting international and regional peace and security and achieving lasting peace and development for all peoples.

HE Lolwah bint Rashid Al Khater began her speech by stressing that what the world needs today is not more legislations, but rather a political will to protect children and humanity as a whole, in addition to more moral courage to liberate from the tendencies of domination, effective implementation of international law, international humanitarian law, and accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

At the level of the Arab region, Her Excellency drew attention to the factors that fuel conflicts in the region and the resulting grave violations against children, noting that these conflicts are based on internal factors, foremost of which are social and economic conditions, lack of development and political competition, the multiplicity of armed actors, and other external factors represented in foreign occupation and the struggle of major powers to obtain spheres of influence in the region.

In this context, she referred to the report of Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict Virginia Gamba issued in July 2022, which indicated that the violations against Palestinian children by the occupation forces are among the highest figures at the global level.

Source: Qatar News Agency

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