Sri Lanka removed from UN blacklist
Colombo: Sri Lanka has been removed from a United Nations blacklist after the country made efforts to improve health and education and to trace missing children.
The whereabouts of almost 1,400 children who were recruited to fight in Sri Lanka's civil war are unknown.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, in the agency’s annual report titled ‘Children and Armed Conflict’, said Sri Lanka had made serious efforts to trace those children.
He said this was the reason the country had been removed from the UN's list, The BBC reports.
Sri Lanka was also praised by a UNICEF board member who recently led a delegation visiting the country.
He said the government's efforts to distribute money for vaccinations and schooling during the war was ‘amazing’.
He also said the country now had some of the best child-health indicators in the region.
Sri Lanka's civil war came to an end in 2009, after 26 years of conflict and up to 100,000 casualties as Tamils fought for self-rule.
Many children still remain missing, and the whereabouts of five boys recruited by Tamil factions aligned with the government are being actively investigated by the National Child Protection Authority.
Meanwhile, 52 countries are named on the UN's blacklist, with Syria, Yemen and Sudan among the most recent additions.