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Afghanistan Nearly half of Afghanistan’s children not in school

NEARLY half of Afghanistan’s children are not in school because of war and poverty, according to a report published yesterday by the Education Ministry and UN children’s agency Unicef.

About 3.7 million, or 44 per cent, of all children aged seven to 17 are not studying. It’s the first year since 2002 that the rate of attendance has fallen.

The survey says girls account for 60 per cent of those denied an education.

“Business as usual is not an option for Afghanistan if we are to fulfil the right to education for every child,” said Adele Khodr, Unicef’s Afghanistan representative.

“When children are not in school, they are at an increased danger of abuse, exploitation and recruitment.”

Unicef said families being displaced by the continuing fighting, child marriage, a lack of female teachers, poor school facilities, poverty and insecurity led to children, particularly girls, not attending school.

In some provinces the proportion of girls not attending school is as high as 85 per cent, including in Kandahar and Helmand.

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