Save the Children | Kabul | 13 May 2020
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Following multiple attacks in Afghanistan, including a devastating assault on a maternal and newborn health clinic in Kabul on May 12 that killed several children, Denisa Delic, Save the Children’s Head of UK Influencing - Children and Armed Conflict, said:
"Save the Children strongly condemns this brutal attack on a hospital maternal ward in Kabul. Newborn babies and women in labour were killed in cold blood. This was a sinister, cowardly and calculated attack on women, children and health workers. Our thoughts are with the victims’ families.
"The first moments of a newborn’s life should be spent in the arms of its mother, not in a burning hospital with bullets and bombs raining down. No baby should enter the world this way and no mother should have to face such a traumatic event.
"It has been a devastating 48 hours for Afghanistan’s children. Besides the tragic incident in Kabul, at least seven children were killed in separate attacks in Logar, Farah and Paktika provinces.
"These multiple attacks on civilians have seen a resumption of offensive operations against armed groups. At a time when the world must come together to fight COVID-19, we urge all parties in Afghanistan to stop the fighting right now and do everything possible to protect children. We also urge the international community to help Afghans reach a lasting ceasefire.”
"The deliberate targeting of civilians and attacks on hospitals and schools are indisputable war crimes under international law. The perpetrators must be held to account.”
"Even during the pandemic, the UK cannot afford to neglect horrific incidents like these. As a permanent member of the UN Security Council, we have a responsibility - and the power - to ensure the international community stays focussed on stopping the war on children, wherever it breaks out. The alternative is sleepwalking into a future where international rules and laws are discarded, and deadly attacks on children are accepted."
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