Education in the Crossfire in Myanmar: Attacks on Schools, Use by Military and Armed Groups, Skyrocketed after 2021 Takeover – Save the Children

by | Sep 9, 2022 | Education

FAIRFIELD, Conn. (September 9, 2022) –  In Myanmar, violent attacks on schools increased to over 190 in 2021, from ten in 2020, the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack (GCPEA) said in a report released today, the third United Nations International Day to Protect Education from Attack. 

As conflict intensified in Myanmar following the February 2021 takeover, attacks on schools occurred in 13 states and regions, up from three in 2020.

The report, The Impacts of Attacks on Education and Military Use in Myanmar, also found a sharp increase in military use of schools and universities after the takeover, with over 170 cases reported in 2021. The Myanmar military and armed groups used education facilities primarily as bases, detention sites, to store weapons, and as fighting positions. The use of schools by armed forces and armed groups upends education as parties to the conflict typically damage schools or universities, while their presence endangers students. More often, it also leads to the institutions shutting down and setting back learning, sometimes for years. Families are particularly wary of sending girls to schools used by armed forces and armed groups for fear of them falling victim to sexual and other forms of violence.

Military use of schools and fighting nearby also increases the risk of explosive remnants of war, including unexploded ordnance, contaminating schools and routes to and from them, creating long-term dange …

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