UNICEF data indicates that 1 in 8 babies born in conflict zones in 2015

african-babyA data released by UNICEF on Monday said that the number of babies born in conflict zones increased by more than 125,000 this year to 16.6 million compared with the figure in 2014.

The UNICEF Executive Director, Anthony Lake, made the disclosure in New York, noting that “the figure translates to one in eight of all births worldwide in 2015.’’

He said that protracted civil wars put civilians at risk in a slew of countries, including Syria, the Central African Republic and South Sudan.

He explained that this could be a worse start in life and that in 2014, 16.4 million babies were born in conflict zones and rose to 16.6 million this year.

He narrated that “one of those babies was a boy named Dilgesh, born to Syrian asylum seeker Nahide, age 19.

“Separated by the war from her parents, the young mother and her seven-month-old son travelled all alone through Turkey.

“I was really kind of in awe of this person, the inner strength that she has.’’

Lake said that by 2016, UNICEF projected an increase to 16.7 million babies born in conflict zones.

Debra DeLaet, a Professor of Political Science at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, who wrote on the topic, said children born in war zones could suffer from unhealthy emotions.

She said such children could have cognitive development and were more likely to die before the age of five years.

“Such babies may also suffer if they were conceived as a result of rape committed during conflicts.

“There are instances of some women attempting to kill children at birth.

“Others are vulnerable to being abandoned or rejected by family members,’’ she added.

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