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COVID-19 pandemic could force at least 9.7 million children out of school forever by year end: Dr Tedros

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Geneva: The Director General of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warns that the deep budgets cuts to education and rising poverty cause by the COVID-19 pandemic could force at least 9.7 million children out of school forever by the end of this year, with million more falling behind in learning.

“While it is too early to assess the full impact of so-called lockdowns and other containment measures, up to 132 million more people may go hungry in 2020, in addition to the 690 million who went hungry last year. Deep budget cuts to education and rising poverty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic could force at least 9.7 million children out of school forever by the end of this year, with millions more falling behind in learning,” expressed Dr Tedros at an online global media briefing from Geneva. 

The DG of the WHO further elucidated that the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in humanitarian settings can aggravate already dire living conditions – more displacement, food shortages, risk of malnutrition, decrease in access to essential services, mental health problems, and so on.

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