The United Nations (UN) says nearly 500 children have lost their lives and sustained injuries in the ongoing terrorist attacks and acts of violence in Iraq so far this year.
“The continuing conflict in Iraq has inflicted heavy losses on the lives of the most vulnerable citizens represented by children,” special representative for Iraq and head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) Jan Kubis, and UNICEF’s representative in Iraq Peter Hawkins said in a joint statement on Thursday.
The statement added that a total of 189 Iraqi children have been killed and another 301 injured since the beginning of 2015.
Hundreds of Iraqi kids have also been deprived of access to basic health and education services in crisis-hit regions because of attacks on schools and medical facilities, it added.
The northern and western parts of Iraq have been plagued by violence ever since Takfiri Daesh militants began an offensive in Iraqi territory in June 2014. Army soldiers and Popular Mobilization units have joined forces and are seeking to take back militant-held regions in joint operations.
UNAMI says a total of 888 Iraqis were killed and another 1,237 wounded in acts of terrorism, violence and armed conflict in November alone. According to the UN mission, the number of civilian fatalities stood at 489. Violence also claimed the lives of 399 members of the Iraqi security forces. A great portion of the fatalities was recorded in Baghdad, where 325 civilians were killed.