World Children's Day: Unicef to keep digital platforms shut in solidarity with Afghan kids

"It is difficult to celebrate being a child in Afghanistan right now," a representative for the organisation said.


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Reuters file
Reuters file

Published: Sat 20 Nov 2021, 8:30 AM

Last updated: Sat 20 Nov 2021, 8:31 AM

On the occasion of World Children’s Day, Unicef Afghanistan has decided to close all its digital platforms on Saturday, in solidarity with Afghan children who are bearing the rapidly escalating humanitarian crisis in the country.

“In solidarity with the children of Afghanistan who are bearing the brunt of a rapidly escalating humanitarian crisis, this year, as Unicef marks World Children’s Day (WCD) globally, Unicef Afghanistan will not celebrate,” a United Nations International Children Emergency Fund (Unicef) statement read.

Today, November 20, marks the International Day of Children with several governments and organisations celebrating the day. But, this year, Unicef Afghanistan has said that this day will not be celebrated in Afghanistan.

“Today, Unicef Afghanistan is ‘blackwashing’ its WCD online assets and, tomorrow, November 20, the day on which Unicef typically ‘goes blue’ for children, Unicef Afghanistan will close its digital channels, going dark to reflect the challenges that children in Afghanistan are facing,” the statement has said on Friday.

The Unicef usually goes blue on this day, but this year it decided to go black.


In a statement, the UN agency said that the dry winter, weak harvest, and drought have led to 14 million children being left without sufficient food.

“It is difficult to celebrate being a child in Afghanistan right now. By closing our digital platforms on World Children’s Day, we want to send a message to donors urging them to support Afghanistan’s children,” said Alice Akunga, Unicef Acting Representative in Afghanistan. “Those least responsible for this crisis are paying the highest price.”

Unicef has called on global leaders to place the rights and welfare of Afghan children at the heart of their discussion around funding the humanitarian crisis.

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