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Home » News

UNICEF welcomes Israel’s release of Palestinian child detainees

Article / Review by on December 19, 2011 – 8:28 pmNo Comments

UNICEF welcomes Israel’s release of Palestinian child detainees

Israeli soldier arresting 12 year-old Palestinian youth at Nablus checkpointIsraeli soldier arresting 12 year-old Palestinian youth at Nablus checkpoint

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) welcomed the release of 55 Palestinian child detainees by Israel yesterday as part of a prisoner swap deal struck two months ago, and said it looked forward to more advancements on this issue.

“We welcome this release of children by the Israeli authorities and we look forward to further progress on the issue of child detainees,” said Jean Gough, UNICEF Special Representative in the occupied Palestinian territory.

This is the second round of prisoner releases, following the first exchange on 18 October, when Hamas released the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who had been held captive since June 2006, and Israel released 477 Palestinian prisoners – many of whom had been imprisoned for involvement in attacks on Israelis.

We welcome this release of children by the Israeli authorities and we look forward to further progress on the issue of child detainees.

As part of the deal, Israel also agreed to release 550 prisoners within the following two months of the first exchange.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called the prisoner exchange a “humanitarian breakthrough” and said he hoped it would have a far-reaching and positive impact on the stalled Middle East peace process.

According to a news release issued by the agency, a total of 161 Palestinians under the age of 18 had been detained by Israeli military authorities as of 1 December. The 55 children who were released are reported to be between the ages of 14 and 17.

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About UNICEF

UNICEF works in 190 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments. For more information about UNICEF and its work visit: www.unicef.org

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> United Nations (UN).

The General Assembly in session. Photo credit: UN / Eskinder Debebe The United Nations was established on 24 October 1945 by 51 countries committed to preserving peace through international cooperation and collective security. Today, nearly every nation in the world belongs to the UN: membership totals 192 countries.

When States become Members of the United Nations, they agree to accept the obligations of the UN Charter, an international treaty that sets out basic principles of international relations. According to the Charter, the UN has four purposes:

  • to maintain international peace and security;
  • to develop friendly relations among nations;
  • to cooperate in solving international problems and in promoting respect for human rights;
  • and to be a centre for harmonizing the actions of nations.

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* The above story is adapted from materials provided by United Nations (UN)
** More information at United Nations (UN)

More about United Nations (UN)

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