HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani participated in the high-level event to celebrate the International Day to Protect Education from Attack, which comes on Sept. 9 of each year. The event was organized by Education Above All, the State of Qatar’s permanent delegation to the United Nations, UNICEF, UNESCO, and the Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict at the level of Under-Secretary-General.
HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs said that the State of Qatar is honored to host the important event, noting that the State of Qatar led the efforts for more than a year that culminated in passing resolution 74/275 proclaiming Sep. 9 an International Day to Protect Education from Attack.
His Excellency, in a speech he gave during the high-level event, said that the State of Qatar with made these efforts due to its belief in education as a core political and developmental priority. His Excellency added that the state believes in the transformational power education has, stressing that it was crucial to ensure education continues during periods of armed conflicts. His Excellency also stressed the importance of providing programmes for cooperation and international support that defends against attacks on education, highlighting that it was a duty and not just a choice.
His Excellency added that such efforts are crucial because education provides boys and girls with hope, confidence, and dignity, in addition to providing them the skills they need to escape from poverty. His Excellency noted that education also saves lives, limits the spread of diseases and pandemics that are preventable, in addition to playing an active role in rebuilding societies that suffered from conflict and is trying to transition to peace. His Excellency said that education is a main channel in improving understanding, tolerance, and mutual respect whether for each other or for the planet.
HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs noted that millions of children and young people are out of school either as a result of living under emergency conditions or in area with conflict, adding that the last few years saw increasing attacks on schools and its infrastructure, which deprived a shocking number of children from access to good education. His Excellency said that what concerns the State of Qatar the most is that the majority of the affected children and youth will be forgotten and might never be able to have access to education again.
His Excellency highlighted the importance of prioritizing education for girls in areas of conflict, saying that danger surrounding girls and their dignity increases when they don’t go to school.
HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs stressed that the State of Qatar is very interested in having children and young people in Afghanistan get access to education, adding that the state is putting a lot of effort to pursue that goal. His Excellency gave an example with 111 Afghan students in a private school in Kabul who managed to travel to Doha. There was also the famous girls robotics team from Afghanistan who are now in Qatar, after they were transported to Doha with help from the Qatari government, and will be given a chance to continue their education in the field of robotics.
His Excellency added that the State of Qatar is working continuously with its international partners in order to protect civilians in Afghanistan, in light of the current political conditions in the country. His Excellency said that this includes students, citizens, and journalists of friendly countries who are looking to leave Afghanistan by providing a safe path to travel to Doha and then the next destination.
His Excellency reiterated that the State of Qatar spares no effort in enhancing monitoring and reporting mechanisms, including investment in data collection and analysis, in order to guarantee accountability for violations against children and teachers, in addition to attacks on schools that are carried out in violation of humanitarian international law.
Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs