United Nations says 2017 a 'nightmare year' for children

United Nations says 2017 a 'nightmare year' for children

"It's something that we can not allow to become the new normal", Morley added.

In Syria and Iraq, number of cases of children being used as human shields, trapped under siege, targeted by snipers have been reported.

More than 11 million children need humanitarian assistance.

As well as the Middle East, children caught in conflicts in Myanmar, South Sudan, Ukraine, Somalia and Sub-Saharan Africa ¨ have become "frontline targets", used as human shields, killed, maimed and recruited to fight with militants. "Such brutality can not be the new normal". "Such brutality can not be the new normal", UNICEF Director of Emergency Programs Manuel Fontaine said.

Children have been subject to a widespread and "shocking" scale of violence this year, the U.N.'s children fund said, as conflicts around the world have increasingly targeted and victimized the most vulnerable.

- In the Central African Republic, after months of renewed fighting, a dramatic increase in violence saw children being killed, raped, abducted and recruited by armed groups.

19,000 - Children recruited as soldiers in South Sudan, where 2,300 kids have been killed since 2013.

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In Yemen - where at least 5,000 children have died in the civil war that has raged for nearly three years - more than 11 million children are now in need of humanitarian assistance.

In Somalia, almost 1,800 children were recruited to fight in the first 10 months of the year.

The assessment is from UNICEF, which promotes the rights and wellbeing of children around the world, working in 190 countries and territories.

UNICEF calls on all parties to conflict to abide by their obligations under worldwide law to immediately end violations against children and the targeting of civilian infrastructure, including schools and hospitals. On the other hand, millions of children pay an indirect price because they suffer from malnutrition, diseases, and traumas due to difficulties in accessing basic services, including food, water, sanitation, and health.

The agency accused rival parties in conflict areas of "blatantly" disregarding global laws created to protect the most vulnerable.

In Yemen, according to verified figures, at least 5,000 children have been killed or injured in approximately 1,000 days of fighting.