Afghanistan : Children Devastated by War
By Anisa Noori

"War violates every right of a child -- the right to life, the right to be with family and community, the right to health, the right to development of personality, and the right to be nurtured and protected. What do people get from war? They don't achieve anything from it. The only thing that they will accomplish is deaths of thousands of people, every single day.
Twenty five years of armed battle have overwhelmed the lives of millions of Afghani children, and families in Afghanistan. Families have separated in the fighting. Many children have lost their parents and even their siblings, and some have been forced to leave their homes and their country. "My greatest wish is to be happy, to learn to read and write, to have warm shoes, and eat as much as I want to. I want to return home," says Ahmad Hussein, a 12 year-old internally displaced Afghan child.
The physical, mental and emotional well-being of Afghani children have been affected by the continuous war. Children have been victims of the war in many different ways. Did you know that hundreds of thousands of children have been killed in random bombing, destroying all of their homes, school and even their playing fields? And many more have been killed by the millions of landlords. Girls and at times boys have faced rapes and sexual assault.
Afghani children have been kidnapped by the war leaders. "Either it's for their own reasons or to sell them to prostitution." This is what a mother said when the commanders took her daughter. She also said "It was just hard for me to say anything because then we would get killed."
The commander contacted the father and asked him to give his daughter to the commander. The family refused. The commander then came back in the evening with a number of armed guards and took the girl away. The family did not resist, so no one was killed, but no one knows what happened to the girl.
I see how healthy children in North America live, but in Afghanistan children have been suffering because of inadequate healthcare, food, and even water. About four million children in Afghanistan have died from illness, while 268,000 children under the age of 5 have died from terrible diseases such as diarrhea, leprosy and pulmonary conditions. This is all happening because of the war that has been going on in Afghanistan for years.
Did you know that two thirds of the children have seen dead bodies lying around? 90% of the kids in Afghanistan think that they would die while the battle is going on. There are millions of children who don't sleep at night because they're scared that they're going die.


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