child soldiers

Mon
29
Feb
2016
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ElPais.com.co

On Wednesday the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Fuerzas Armadas...

Thu
27
Aug

MPs back signing of optional protocol on child soldiers

By Ei Ei Toe Lwin, The Myanmar Times

The Pyidaungsu Hluttaw has approved an optional international protocal which aims to keep children out of armed conflict.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs submitted a proposal to proceed with the ratification of the United Nations protocol to parliament on August 20. It was approved without objection yesterday.

The optional protocol – an addition to the Convention on the Rights of the Child – requires states to “take all feasible measures” to ensure that soldiers under the age of 18 do not take a direct part in hostilities. They are also required to raise the voluntary recruitment age above 15 years, and cannot conscript anyone under 18. Parties to the optional protocol must also take measures to stop non-state armed groups from recruiting and using children under the age of 18 in conflicts.

Fri
31
Jul

Anti-Isis summer camp: Schoolboys trained by Iraqi government-backed Shia militias

By Lizzie Dearden, The Independent

The use of teenage suicide bombers and boy soldiers by Isis is well-documented but the so-called Islamic State is not the only militant group abusing children in Iraq.

The Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF), a coalition of Shia militias sponsored by the Iraqi government and reportedly using American weapons, has also recruited an “unknown number” of minors.

Investigators with the UN’s children and armed conflict office reported last month that the PMF was searching for child soldiers from conflict zones across Iraq, as well as in Baghdad and Basra.

Thu
16
Jul

More than 50 IS child soldiers killed in Syria in 2015

More than 50 child soldiers recruited by the Islamic State group in Syria have been killed since the beginning of this year, a monitoring group said Wednesday.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said it had documented the deaths of 52 child soldiers, all under the age of 16, who had been part of IS's "Cubs of the Caliphate" program.

The programme provides intense military and religious training to children throughout IS's areas of control in Syria, the Britain-based Observatory said.

As many as 31 were killed in July alone, in explosions, clashes, and air strikes by Syria's regime and the US-led coalition.

Tue
07
Jul

Care for depression, anxiety helps war-exposed children long-term

By Anne Harding

Treating depression and anxiety in youngsters affected by war may have lasting benefits for their mental health and ability to function in society, new findings suggest.

The study, of former child soldiers and other young people affected by Sierra Leone's civil war, found that those with higher levels of anxiety and depression two years after the end of the conflict had the highest levels of these “internalizing symptoms” four years later. They also had worse post-traumatic stress symptoms and exhibited more anti-social behavior.

The findings suggest that treating anxiety and depression in war-affected youth could have multi-faceted effects on their future mental health, attitudes, and behavior, the researchers write in Pediatrics.

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.”

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