Protecting Education from Attack: Scope, Impact and Response

Thursday 28 May 2020 at 1:15 - 2:30 PM.

Invitation to a High-Level Virtual Event

Protecting Education from Attack: Scope, Impact and Response

The Permanent Missions of Norway, Argentina, Nigeria, Qatar, Spain and Uruguay, together with the Global Coalition to Protection Education from Attack (GCPEA), have the honour to invite you to a virtual event to examine the latest data on attacks on education and to mark the Fifth Anniversary of the Safe Schools Declaration.

The event, convened during the United Nations Protection of Civilians Week, will take place on Thursday 28 May 2020 at 1.15-2.30 PM EST

Watch it here on YouTube.

Read more: Concept note Protecting Education (.pdf).


Opening remarks

  • H.E. Ms. Ine Eriksen Søreide, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Norway
  • H.E. Ms. ‚ÄčArancha González Laya, Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, Spain


  • Ms. Virginia Gamba, Under-Secretary-General Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict
  • Mr. Bruno Stagno Ugarte, Deputy Executive Director for Advocacy, Human Rights Watch
  • Ms. Marika Tsolakis, Lead Researcher, GCPEA
  • Mr. Mohamed Zaher Al-Bakour, Lecturer, Aleppo University, Syria


  • Ms. Yasmine Sherif, Director of Education Cannot Wait

The event will highlight the global scope and impact of attacks on education by presenting findings from the upcoming 2020 edition of GCPEA’s flagship report, Education under Attack*. In conflicts around the world, students and educators are deliberately and indiscriminately killed, injured, recruited, raped, and abducted at, and on the way to education institutions. Schools and universities are bombed and burned and used for military purposes. In addition to the loss of life, these attacks impede education, impacting long-term economic and social development.

Education Under Attack is the most comprehensive and rigorous source of data and analysis on attacks on education and military use of schools and universities. The series serves as the primary source for reporting on indicator 4.a.3 on attacks on students, education personnel, and educational institutions, which monitors progress in implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goal 4, Quality Education. The fifth edition will outline incidents of attacks on education and military use of educational facilities in 37 conflict-affected countries that suffer these attacks systematically between January 1, 2017 and December 31, 2019.

This event will also mark the Fifth Anniversary of the Safe Schools Declaration, an intergovernmental political commitment to better protect education during armed conflict. To date, 104 states have endorsed the Declaration, representing more than half of all UN member states. Many states have already taken a critical action in implementing the Safe Schools Declaration, as documented by GCPEA in Practical Impact of the Safe Schools Declaration, saving lives and better ensuring the right to education for all in places affected by conflict.

*Education Under Attack 2020 is generously supported by Education Above All, Education Cannot Wait, the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and an anonymous donor.

More information