The protection of children is a priority for Renew Europe. Every year, thousands of children go missing. Although there is no statutory publication of statistics on missing children in the EU, some organisations estimate that 300,000 children disappear every year. We cannot allow this situation to continue.
With the illegal invasion of Ukraine by the Russian army, children are extremely vulnerable. According to UNICEF and UNHCR, over 100,000 unaccompanied minors have been forced to flee the conflict. They are at enormous risks.
We call for a comprehensive and cross-sectoral response in order to fight this massive danger for these children. All relevant national, regional and local authorities must be brought together to address this issue.
Izaskun Bilbao Barandica (Partido Nacionalista Vasco, Spain), Renew Europe MEP, who was at the initiative of the debate on missing children and missing persons at risk in plenary, declared: "The longer a person remains missing, the greater the risk. More data and coordination will help us to better assess each situation and to prioritise and promote rapid investigations that will prevent many problems. We need to be extra vigilant in cases involving children and disappearances in trans-border areas."