KYIV, Ukraine/ Geneva/ New York/ Hong Kong, 20 February 2014 – The impact of the heightened violence in Ukraine on children and their families is a matter of growing concern. There have been reports of children being caught up and even injured in the violence in Kyiv. UNICEF is seeking information to confirm these reports and is closely monitoring the situation as it affects children. All parties have a responsibility to keep children out of harm’s way.
Children are especially vulnerable in situations involving violent conflict, not only to violence itself but also to the traumatic effects of witnessing such violence. Among other threats to their wellbeing, children can become separated from their parents in the chaos, and basic services for children become strained. In affected areas, some schools have already been closed and health facilities are more difficult to access. In such situations special care must be taken to support children.