UNICEF finds that one in four refugees is a child

Irish Examiner - Supplement - - 60 YEARS OF EUROPEAN UNITY - — Joe Der­mody

United Na­tions Chil­dren’s Fund ( UNICEF) is­sued a re­port in April show­ing one in four of the 29,758 refugees and mi­grants who en­tered Europe by sea from Jan­uary to March 2017 were chil­dren. In all, a third of those ar­riv­ing since 2015 are chil­dren.

In the first three months of 2017, close to 25,000 chil­dren have claimed asy­lum in Europe, while 24,600 re­main stranded in Greece and the Balkans.

UNICEF wel­comed the ef­forts and com­mit­ments made by some EU states and called upon others to do more to help refugees.

“In March, a pro­gres­sive new law was adopted in Italy to boost sup­port and pro­tec­tion for the record num­ber of for­eign un­ac­com­pa­nied and sep­a­rated chil­dren who ar­rived in Italy,” stated UNICEF. “Yet, more needs to be done — ap­pro­pri­ate re­cep­tion con­di­tions, ser­vices, and in­for­ma­tion pro­vi­sion in a lan­guage chil­dren un­der­stand — not only in Italy, but all across Europe.”

Sit­u­a­tion in num­bers

■ 29,758 of ar­rivals in EU through Italy, Greece, and Spain in Jan-March 2017.

( UNHCR, April 6, 2017).

■ 1 in 4 of all ar­rivals from Jan­uary- March 2017 are chil­dren.

(UNHCR, April 10, 2017).

■ 24,785 of child asy­lum seek­ers in Europe be­tween Jan­uary and March 2017

(Euro­stat, April 10, 2017).

■ 24,614 chil­dren were stranded in Greece, Bul­garia, Mace­do­nia, Ser­bia, Croa­tia, and Slove­nia in Fe­bru­ary 2017.

( UNICEF, 7 April 2017).

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