This policy brief represents the first annual update of a mapping of the number of children living in conflict settings around the world, extending the existing data series to 2017. More than three quarters of the world’s children were living in a conflict-ridden country in 2017. Even more worryingly, more than 420 million children, or more than one in six children, were living very close to a conflict zone – that is, less than 50km from where the actual fighting took place. Despite some recent progress in data collection and research, we need more systematic knowledge on how these children are impacted by conflict. More resources should be invested in collecting and managing systematic data on the various ways in which these children are directly affected by armed conflict, such as through killing and maiming, child soldier recruitment, sexual exploitation, and the denial of humanitarian access.
Østby, Gudrun; Siri Aas Rustad & Andreas Forø Tollefsen (2018) Children Affected by Armed Conflict, 1990–2017, Conflict Trends, 10. Oslo: PRIO.