New York (IP) – Iranian ambassador and permanent representative to the UN on Monday slammed the United Nations for failing to include Israel and Saudi Arabia in its blacklist of parties violating minors’ rights during conflicts, calling on the UN to adopt a non-discriminatory approach in naming and shaming child-killer regimes.

Iran PressAmerica: Majid Takht-Ravanchi made the remarks at the June 28 meeting of the UN Security Council over the "Children and Armed Conflict."
Here is the full text of his statement:
In armed conflicts, the protection of children, particularly girls, is a fundamental, moral, and humanitarian principle. Every effort must be made to ensure that all parties in all conflicts fully respect it.
Nevertheless, it is highly alarming that according to the annual report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict, "In 2020, the situation of children in armed conflict was marked by a sustained high number of grave violations." Unfortunately, many such violations have occurred in our neighborhood, from Afghanistan to Yemen to Palestine.
The most recent example of such violations in Afghanistan is a cowardly terrorist attack that took place, on May 8, 2021, in front of the Sayed Al-Shuhada school in the community of Shi'ites of the Hazara minority in Kabul, killing 85 and injuring 147 others, primarily schoolgirls.
This and other deadly terrorist acts in Afghanistan, mostly committed by Daesh, targeting certain religious and ethnic minorities and women and girls, underscore the continued need for combating terrorism and bringing the perpetrators of these reprehensible acts to justice.
In 2020, the United Nations verified the killing and maiming of 194 by the so-called Coalition to Support Legitimacy in Yemen, as stated by the Secretary-General in his annual report. Nonetheless, on June 22, 2021, Yemeni children marched across the country, noting that in more than six years, as a result of the attacks by that Coalition, over 3,500 Yemeni children were martyred, more than 4,000 were injured, thousands were orphaned, and millions were displaced from their homes. They also expressed their strong dissatisfaction with the United Nations for not properly reflecting in its reports such grave violations of the rights of Yemeni children.
Yet, the most systematic and gross violation of children's rights in the Middle East continues to be committed by the Israeli regime. According to the Secretary-General's annual report, in 2020, the United Nations verified 1,031 cases of grave violations against 340 Palestinian children, including killing 11, maiming 324, and detaining 361, as well as 30 attacks on schools and hospitals by Israeli forces.
In its 11-day brutal and all-out war on Gaza in May 2021, Israeli forces killed 253 Palestinians, including 66 children. This includes 13 members of an extended family who have been killed and buried in the rubble of their own home -- many of whom were children, one as young as six months. Israeli forces also destroyed 30 health facilities and around 50 schools.
These barbaric acts are clear manifestations of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity, materially breach fundamental norms and principles of international law and entail global responsibility of the Israeli regime, whose officials must therefore be brought to justice for committing such heinous crimes.
Protection of children in armed conflicts primarily requires putting an end to the current disputes and preventing their re-emergence and the eruption of new wars and ensuring the full and effective implementation of international humanitarian law by the conflicting parties.
The mechanism to list the parties violating children's rights in armed conflicts must also be used effectively and without discrimination and selectivity. It is a source of grave concern that the Israeli forces have never been blacklisted as violators of children's rights in relevant reports of the Secretary-General. The name of the so-called Coalition to Support Legitimacy in Yemen has been deleted from the top of that list.
We share the views of several Council members as well as a significant number of other Member States that have expressed concern in recent years on discrepancies between the violations described in the reports of the Secretary-General and the listing of the parties in their annexes, as well as the premature delisting of parties, calling for a consistent application of the criteria for listing and delisting parties, and stressing the importance of upholding the impartiality and integrity of such mechanism.
Moreover, one of the missing elements of the Secretary-General's report on children and armed conflict seems to be the absence of assessment about the adverse impacts of unilateral sanctions on the protection of children in conflict situations, where sanctions most often deteriorate the economy, exacerbate the living conditions and ultimately render the children vulnerable to recruitment by terrorist groups, force them to leave their family and home and join displaced communities, and deprive them of proper education, health services and the like. This vital factor deserves serious attention by the Secretary-General in his future reports.
Finally, the protection of children in armed conflicts is the protection of our future societies. This is a noble humanitarian duty, and we must take it seriously and do whatever in our power to protect them from the scourge of wars and conflicts.


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