UNICEF facts on Children and Women in Afghanistan
UNICEF, January 2000
- 22.1 million people live in poverty and substandard conditions
- Infrastructure in ruins from 21 years of war
- Systemic gender discrimination against women and girls
- Widespread human rights abuses based on ethnicity, religion and language
- 309,000 children under five years of age die each year; under-five mortality rate ranks fourth worldwide
- The education of girls is banned in over 90 per cent of the country.
- Only 17 per cent of population has access to safe water, and only 10 per cent to adequate sanitation
- Adult literacy rate is 27 per cent for men and 5.6 per cent for women
- Primary school enrolment for both girls and boys is low
- An entire generation of children has grown up amidst armed conflict
- The infant mortality rate measures 165 per 1,000 live births, while the under-five mortality rate is 257 per 1,000 live births.
- Diarrhoeal diseases and acute respiratory infections cause an estimated 42 per cent of childhood deaths.
- Poor access to obstetric care and a lack of reproductive health and family planning services contribute to the declining health status of women and children.
- One in five children present signs of acute malnutrition
- More than one half of women of reproductive age have never received tetanus toxoid (TT).
- The quality of education is poor, and school enrolment countrywide is low.
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