AFRICA/MALI - Armed conflict exacerbates the already precarious country's education system

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Barcelona (Agenzia Fides) - The armed conflicts underway in Mali continue to aggravate the already precarious education of children, and to cope with this emergency, the Spanish NGO Intervida is committed to the education of 738 displaced children in addition to the assistance to 20 thousand children who are victims of poverty. This state of insecurity and violence puts, especially children, at serious risk. It is estimated that 300 000 students were not able to return to school when the war broke out and 80% of school age refugee children do not attend the lessons. Even before the conflict, the education system in Mali was very precarious, with more than 800 thousand children excluded from the right to education.
According to the latest estimates of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the crisis which exploded in northern Mali earlier this year has caused the internal displacement of 200 thousand people towards Mopti, Ségou and Bamako, while 145 thousand people have sought refuge in the neighboring countries such as Mauritania, Burkina Faso, Niger, Algeria, Togo and Guinea. Intervida has been working in the region of Ségou since 2002, in favor of children's rights, and has integrated into its projects children displaced by the conflict, providing them with medical care and access to education. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 24/01/2013)