Education International joins the Global Partnership for Education and UNICEF in expressing utmost dismay at the killing of teachers and children in an airstrike in war-torn Yemen.
A teachers' office in Amran, Yemen, was hit during a bombing raid, and 13 teachers and 4 children were killed, as well as 20 people injured, UNICEF reports. The teachers were gathered after school had ended to prepare exams for thousands of children who had missed the end of their school year because of the continuing fighting in Yemen.
EI General Secretary Fred van Leeuwen expressed his condolences to the victims' families and to EI's affiliate in the country, the Yemen Teachers' Syndicate. "Tragic incidents like this one show once more how important it is that schools must be safe sanctuaries," he added. "Together with our partners at the GPE and UNICEF, as well as the UN Special Envoy for Global Education, we will make every effort to ensure that the international community helps children to receive their education and helps teachers to work safely even in such devastating circumstances."
The ongoing conflict in Yemen has had a catastrophic impact on children and teachers, the GPE reports. Nearly 400 schools have been damaged due to shelling or airstrikes, 95 completely destroyed. A further 663 are currently unusable because they are occupied by armed groups or housing internally displaced families. At least 3,600 schools have closed over the past two months, leaving 1.8 million children deprived of education.