Delegates: Mr. Chaudhry, Ms. Gunnufsen
35. Mr. Chaudhry (Norway), speaking as a youth delegate, said that his father, as an immigrant, had had a positive experience of integration into the Norwegian educational system. Unfortunately, that was not the case for every immigrant, displaced person and refugee. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees had estimated that 3.7 million displaced children had dropped out of school, and educational infrastructure was seriously lacking in refugee camps around the globe. Integration into national systems was often chaotic or non-existent, and the teacher-student ratio for displaced children and youth was 1 to 70.
36. Other marginalized groups included indigenous children and youth, who faced racial and assimilation biases in national educational systems. They were denied an education in their native language, while educational systems erased their culture and traditions from collective memory, making them second-class citizens. Indigenous persons made up 5 per cent of the global population, but 15 per cent of the world’s poorest.
37. Education was an established human right and had to be at the centre of development. Sustainable Development Goal target 4.5 included access to all levels of education for the vulnerable. Norwegian youth called on the United Nations and the international community to ensure access to education for all children and young persons.
38. Ms. Gunnufsen (Norway), speaking as a youth delegate, said that the young generation – the largest youth generation of all times – would inherit a world with great challenges and would be a force for change. In areas of conflict, young people were often portrayed as victims or perpetrators, but they could play a key role in the solution if they were given the opportunity to contribute.
39. More than 600 million young people lived in fragile States or States affected by conflict. In many fragile States, they were the majority of the population, which was a further risk factor for armed conflict. Youth was not the problem, but rather a symptom. Security Council resolutions 2250 (2015) and 2419 (2018) focused specifically on the contribution of youth to peace and security, highlighting young persons as positive factors of change and the importance of including them in all stages of peacebuilding. All Member States should implement those resolutions to ensure sustainable and lasting peace.
UN Doc.: A/C.3/74/SR.2