child soldiers

Tue
18
Oct
2016
New translation available
Submitted by antimili-youth

Would you like to take action against the militarisation of youth with many others across the world?

You can join War Resisters' International's ...

Thu
02
Jul

Army rules for under-18s 'unlawful' - the UK

Army regulations are unlawfully requiring soldiers who join up before their 18th birthday to serve a longer minimum period than those who enlist as adults, it has been claimed in the High Court.

A judge heard accusations that the difference in treatment was causing real distress to young soldiers who wished to leave but were prohibited from doing so.

The accusations were made by Child Soldiers International (CSI), a charity that seeks to prevent the use of children in armed conflicts around the world and to protect the welfare of young soldiers.

The charity is asking Mr Justice Kenneth Parker, sitting in London, to declare that provisions of the Army Terms of Service Regulations 2007 are resulting in "less favourable treatment" for under-18s and are unlawful under the European Equal Treatment Directive.

David Wolfe QC, representing CSI, said the minimum service period applied to adult Army recruits was four years.

Tue
16
Jun

Many Yemeni Children Carry Guns Instead of Pens

By Samar Qaed, Al-Fanar Media

SANA’A—Hussein Ahmed goes with his friend Ali Daily to an inspection point next to the Olympic Center, North Sana’a, where he was recruited at age 16 by the Houthi Movement.

“The movement gave us weapons and a daily schedule for our guard duty at the checkpoints,” Ahmed said.

Ahmed, who is supposed to serve as a soldier for two years, is not the only one who joined the armed groups at an early age. Unicef has reported that more than 10,000 children have been  recruited for armed forces in Yemen since 2011.

In April of this year alone, Unicef said, at least 140 children were recruited by armed groups, 115 children died in fighting, and 172 were injured. All that happened as a result of the conflicts that began on March 26 between the forces led by Saudi Arabia, the Houthi Movement, and the proponents of former president Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Mon
15
Jun

Nobel laureate Satyarthi says up to 500,000 child soldiers worldwide

Geneva (AFP) - There are up to 500,000 child soldiers around the world, Nobel laureate and child rights activist Kailash Satyarthi said Friday, terming it the worst form of child abuse.

Satyarthi, who is attending an International Labour Organization summit in Geneva, said global funding for education -- the best means to fight child labour and servitude -- had gone down dramatically over the past four years.

"There are between 400,000 and 500,000 child soldiers across the world but the actual numbers could be far higher because there are hidden militant groups kidnapping children and forcing them to use guns," he told reporters.

Mon
11
May

Why so many children are fighting in Yemen’s civil war

By Ali al-Mujahed and Hugh Naylor, The Washington Post

SANAA, Yemen — Abdullah Ali’s 15-year-old son disappeared from home one morning three months ago. A week later, the boy called his horrified family to say he had joined the Shiite insurgents known as Houthis — becoming one of a growing number of underage soldiers fighting in Yemen’s civil war.

“He’s just a child. He’s only in the ninth grade,” Ali, 49, a civil servant who lives in the city of Taiz, said recently. “He should be at school learning, not fighting.”

Thu
07
May

UN says CAR armed groups agree to free child soldiers

Pact signed by eight main militias covers thousands of children, including those used as sex slaves or menial workers.

The United Nations has announced that armed factions in Central African Republic (CAR) have agreed to free all child soldiers and other children used as sex slaves or menial workers, boosting UN-driven efforts at national reconciliation after two years of turmoil.

The pact signed by the eight main militia groups in the country covers an estimated 6,000 to 10,000 children, the United Nations child agency UNICEF said on Tuesday.

Armed groups also pledged to end the recruitment of children.

The accord emerged from a week-long national reconciliation forum which began on Monday with the goal of ending conflict that has killed thousands, and driven more than a million people from their homes.

Fri
01
May

Boko Haram and the Children’s Crusade

By Philip Obaji Jr., The Daily Beast

Generations of young Nigerians in the northeast of their country are being shaped by the terrors of the war.

LAGOS — “I was asked to kill my parents on the day I was captured,” said 16-year-old Babagana, a former Boko Haram child slave. "I had no courage, so they killed them in front of me.”

“That is how Boko Haram operates,” he told me when I saw him in March in Borno State. “They first take out your parents so you have no one else to fall back to.”

Tue
28
Apr

Veterans For Peace Chicago Billboard Campaign

"Very glad to learn about this outstanding initiative, and I wish you the greatest – well-deserved – success."   Noam Chomsky

"Regarding any input I have about your work to demilitarize public education in Chicago, it has my wholehearted support. We should be teaching our children how to resolve conflicts in a peaceful and constructive way."      Roman Catholic Bishop Thomas Gumbleton

What We Are Doing

Veterans For Peace Chicago Billboard Campaign
Thu
23
Apr

‘Raising tomorrow’s mujahideen’: the horrific world of Isis’s child soldiers

By Jessica Stern and JM Berger, The Guardian

Isis’s bid to build a society hasn’t stopped at the recruitment of women. Foreigners have been encouraged to bring their whole families to Iraq and Syria to “live under the shade of the caliphate”.

Mon
20
Apr

Yemen crisis: Meet the child soldiers who have forsaken books for Kalashnikovs

By Charlene Rodrigues and Mohammed Al-Qalisi, The Independent

With schools forced to close, children as young as seven have been recruited by the Shia Houthi rebels.

At the entrance of Bab Al-Yemen, Old Sanaa, a waif-like Hassan, dwarfed by his Kalashnikov, stands at a checkpoint. His dark eyes scan vehicles as they pass through.

Like most seven-year-olds in Sanaa, Hassan used to spend his time at school – or playing table football with his friends. That was until three weeks ago.

Mon
13
Apr

Child soldiers fighting on the frontline in Yemen

Aden has become a theatre of bloody urban warfare as Houthi rebels and backers of president Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi battle for control of the city in southern Yemen. Since fighting first broke out in mid-March, several amateur videos have surfaced showing child soldiers battling on the frontline on both sides.

These striking images were filmed at night and posted on YouTube on March 31. They show youths battling Shiite Houthi rebels in the streets of Aden, a port city located around 500 km south of the capital Sanaa. One of our Observers on the ground confirmed that teenagers aged between 15 to 17 years old were fighting in the ranks of so-called "popular committees", paramilitary units that back the country's beleaguered president.

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