NEW YORK (July 20, 2022) – “At least three children were killed and several wounded in Zakho, northern Iraq, today. This is devastating proof of the need to stop the use of explosive weapons in populated areas. UNICEF is deeply troubled by the killing of three girls, one 1-year-old, one 12-year-old, and one 16-year-old, in the attack today in Dohuk Governorate in Iraq. 

“UNICEF condemns all acts of violence against children and joins the families in mourning the killing of their children and wishes those wounded a fast recovery. Being a victim of, witnessing, or fearing violence should never be part of any child’s experience. 

“All children in Iraq deserve to live their lives without the constant threat of violence exacerbated by the use of explosive weapons. UNICEF calls on all parties to fulfill their obligations, under international law, to protect children at all times and without delay.  

“The usage of explosive weapons in populated areas has been increasing in Iraq. This attack follows a recent one on 15 June in the Sinjar area in Ninewa Governorate, which killed one 12-year-old boy. 

“These attacks put children’s lives at risk not only today but threatening the lives of future generations. In the last five years, at least 519 children were killed or maimed by explosive ordnance.  

“Once again, UNICEF appeals to all parties to ensure the safety and well-being of children and youth and calls for the upholding of children’s right to protection and to live in an environment that is free of violence at all times.”   

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The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) works in more than 190 countries and territories to pursue a more equitable world for every child. UNICEF has helped save more children’s lives than any other humanitarian organization, by providing health care and immunizations, safe water and sanitation, nutrition, education, emergency relief and more.

UNICEF USA advances the global mission of UNICEF by rallying the American public to support the world’s most vulnerable children. Together, we are working toward a world that upholds the rights of all children and helps every child thrive. For more information, visit

For more information please contact:

Mackenzie Dougherty, UNICEF USA, 212.922.2551, [email protected]