The events that unfolded since Saturday, 7 October stunned and shocked the world. The International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) denounces all violence, in any form, and especially violence against children. IBBY’s Mission Statement calls for the protection of all children as codified in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, which states that every child has the inherent right to life and promotes the development of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.
Fifteen years ago, the IBBY Gaza libraries in Beit Hanoun and Rafah opened their doors. These two libraries gave the local children havens where they could enjoy reading and dream of a better future through books. The libraries stayed open through years of blockade, confrontation and poverty, but now war is again destroying their fragile existence. We are deeply concerned for all the children affected by this war: with Gaza under siege and facing a rapidly deteriorating humanitarian situation, we are especially worried about our librarians and their innocent visitors.
Hostage taking and massacres are indefensible, but the current conflict will not solve anything. Therefore, we call on all agencies and organizations that believe in justice, peace and humanity to work towards a diplomatic solution and end this tragic war. The children of Israel and Palestine deserve better than this.
IBBY Executive Committee
18 October 2023
The United States Board on Books for Young People
The U.S. National Section of International Board on Books for Young People
Building Bridges Through Children's and Young Adult Books
Center for Teaching through Children´s Books
National Louis University
1000 Capitol Drive
Wheeling, IL 60090
V. Ellis Vance, Executive Director Executive.Director@usbby.org
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