Geneva - With several countries in the Middle East and North Africa - including Libya and Syria - trapped in a continuous cycle of violence, hundreds of thousands of youth remain the most affected, by violating their human rights and engaging them in armed conflicts, said the Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor in an oral statement during the 39th session of the UN Human Rights Council.
The parties to the conflict in Libya resort to torture as a means to pressure young people and dissidents in all Libyan regions, within both official and unofficial detention facilities, stated Ghada Al Rayyan, Euro-Med’s researcher.
Humanitarian workers, about 70% of whom are youth, were not spared; Euro-Med’s team recorded 18 cases where relief and health workers were killed, 34 cases of assault and arbitrary detention against aid workers during the last seven years.
In Syria, armed conflict continues to claim the lives of thousands of young people who are living under daily bombing, are subjected to torture, or lack food and medical supplies, said Al Rayyan.
During the first half of 2018, Euro-Med Monitor documented 86 cases of death among medics and civil defense personnel, in addition to 165 attacks on medical centers, civil defense and ambulances carried out by various parties.
Concluding their oral statement, the Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor and Jussor called on the Council and its member states to adopt an effective strategy to contain and care for youth in conflict areas, including by assigning a special rapporteur for youth and by establishing a commission of inquiry to identify those responsible, and bring them to trial.