NAIROBI, (CAJ News) – MILLIONS of children driven from their homes by violence and conflict in Africa are further exposed to risk of drowning on sea crossings, malnourishment, trafficking, kidnapping, rape and murder.
This is according to a new report released by the United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef), indicating nearly 50 million children across the globe have migrated across or within borders, or been forcibly displaced.
More than half that number – 28 million – are boys and girls who have fled violence and insecurity.
Unicef further noted that more children are crossing borders on their own.
In 2015, over 100 000 unaccompanied minors applied for asylum in 78 countries – triple the number in 2014. Unaccompanied children are among those at the highest risk of exploitation and abuse, including by smugglers and traffickers.
“The growing crisis for refugee and migrant children presents a sobering picture of the lives and situations of millions of children and families affected by violent conflict and other crises that make it seem safer to risk everything on a perilous journey than to remain at home,” said Unicef executive director, Anthony Lake.
Children constitute one third of the global refugee population.
– <strong>CAJ News</strong><em>