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Education under Attack 2010 - Haiti

Publisher UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO)
Publication Date 10 February 2010
Cite as UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), Education under Attack 2010 - Haiti, 10 February 2010, available at: [accessed 29 May 2016]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

On 13 and 14 December 2006, 30 schoolchildren, aged 13 to 15, were abducted from school buses near Cité Soleil, causing the Ministry of Education to end the school term early. They were the latest in a string of kidnappings that resulted in at least two deaths. But the problem continued: 80 children were kidnapped in 2007 and 69 in the first eight months of 2008.423 A total of 126 children, including 60 girls, were reportedly abducted by armed elements in the period from September to December 2007. The majority of girls abducted were also raped or sexually abused.424

Students on their journey to or from school have been specifically targeted by abductors, according to child protection officials with the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH). These abductions are carried out by armed criminal gangs and take place as children are on their way to or from school. Child victims are often tortured and some are killed, despite the ransom being paid. Girls, who account for almost half of under-age victims, are frequently raped or sexually abused.425

On 9 August 2007, the United Nations Police (UNPOL) and MINUSTAH reported that the director of a primary school had been kidnapped in Cap Haïtien, North Department. On 12 September 2007, the directors of three schools in Cité Soleil told local media that there were increasing acts of looting in their schools, perpetrated by gang members. On 13 November 2007, three girls and one boy were kidnapped in Carrefour on their way out of school.

In February 2008, an 11-year-old boy was killed on his way home from school in Port-au-Prince when armed assailants opened fire. On 23 May 2008, in Port-au-Prince, a 16-year-old boy was kidnapped outside his high school and was later killed, despite the payment of a ransom. When his body was found in a popular neighbourhood in northern Port-au-Prince, it showed signs of torture.426

[Refworld note: The source report "Education under Attack 2010" was posted on the UNESCO website ( in pdf format, with country chapters run together. Original footnote numbers have been retained here.]

423 UN News, "Haiti: UN Mission Alarmed as Another Child Kidnapping Victim is Killed," August 19, 2008.

424 UNSC, Report of the Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict (2009).

425 UN News, "Haiti: UN Mission Alarmed."

426 Information on incidents supplied by MINUSTAH via UNESCO Haiti.

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