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44% of Afghan children are out of school: report

3 June, 2018 4:49 PM
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Increase in violence is the main reason

Nearly half all children in Afghanistan are out of school due to conflict, poverty, child marriage and discrimination against girls, the number rising for the first time since 2002, humanitarian organisations said in a report on Sunday.

Spreading violence has forced many schools to close, undermining fragile gains in education for girls in a country where millions have never set foot in a class room. Some 3.7 million children between the ages of seven and 17, or 44%, are out of school, 2.7 million of them girls, Education Minister Mirwais Balkhi told a seminar, explaining a study conducted by UNICEF, USAID and the independent Samuel Hall think-tank.

Without mentioning the Taliban or Islamic State, Mr. Balkhi said there were “many reasons” for children not going to school. In the worst affected provinces, up to 85% of girls are not going to school, the aid groups said. They did not give specific comparisons.

In April this year, militants set ablaze two schools and widespread violence had led to closure of hundreds of private schools.


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