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Tue
05
Sep

International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth, 20-26 November

International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth

Between 20-26 November, activists from around the world will take action as part of the International Week of Action Against the Militarisation of Youth.

The week, held for the fourth time this year, is a concerted effort of antimilitarist activists across the world to expose and challenge the ways violence is promoted to young people, and raise awareness about alternatives.

In previous years, many groups from all around the world participated in the week with autonomous events, including direct actions, talks, workshops, vigils and social media campaigns.

Thu
17
Aug

Women and youth conscripted in Bolivia, and plans for substitute service

Plans for an alternative 'Social Action Service' have been announced by the Bolivian Ministry of Defence. An amendment to the Military Service Law will be proposed to the President this month. Currently, no substitute to military service exists.

In other changes announced in May, a new military service law sanctioned the recruitment of 17 year olds - a kind of 'voluntary' conscription, open to those who give their consent, and also have the consent of parents or guardians. This follows the 2016 Constitutional Court decision which declared a previous attempt at lowering the recruitment age to 17 'unconstitutional'.

At the same time, they extended voluntary conscription to women. Incidentally, Bolivia remain the only State in Latin America to admit trans* people to the military.

 

Tue
08
Aug

Junior Nzita, ex child soldier: defeat the evil with the good

The foundation „die schwelle“ in Bremen, Germany, has declared Junior Nzita to one of its laureates of the Bremen Peace Prize. Nzita is a former child soldier in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and today he is a honorary UN ambassador for the topic of child soldiers. He was proposed for the Peace Prize by the german branch of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR). The Price exists since 2003 and is endowed with 5000,- Euro.

Mon
07
Aug

Israel: Conscientious objector Noa Gur Golan imprisoned

Conscientious objector Noa Gur Golan, 19, from Israel was sentenced to 30 days in military prison for her refusal to serve in the military. She has already spent 14 days behind bars last month, after refusing to enlist for the first time.

When her sentence will be over, Gur-Golan will refuse again and probably be sentenced to another term in prison.

Mon
24
Jul

Disneyland of War, short documentary

The U.S. government is manipulating children to think that war and violence is fun and glorious.

Disneyland of War, short documentary
Thu
20
Jul

UN urged to blacklist Saudi-led coalition over 'grave violations against children' in Yemen

The UN has been urged by charities to name and shame the Saudi-led coalition over its bombings in Yemen in its annual report on child rights violations in conflict.

A briefing by Save the Children and Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict said the coalition committed “grave violations against children” in a series of 23 attacks in 2016, bombing hospitals or schools, and killing or maiming more than 120 children last year. 

Fri
14
Jul

New Zealand: Children hold assault rifles as part of Army school visit

The New Zealand army has started a new programme teaching children about weaponry and leadership.

Pictures of smiling children holding the unloaded weapons appearing in the New Zealand media has caused Education Minister Nikki Kaye to order new guidelines be drawn up on guns in schools.

As reported by the New Zealand Herald, during the army's visit to a school near Palmerston North, students aged 9 to 13 were allowed to assemble and fire an assault rifle.

One of the students aged 11 told the newspaper that he had never held a gun before and "it felt amazing and cool" while the schoold administration said they did not think the visit would be controversial.

Thu
06
Jul

Hear the voices of Congo’s girl child soldiers

Sandra Olsson*

Multiple conflicts simmer across eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, further impoverishing already struggling rural communities, trapping children in a web of violence.

The conflicts have destroyed communities and created thousands of child soldiers, serving directly on the front lines, or labouring as porters, cooks, and spies. Up to 40 percent of them are girls.

In 2016, Child Soldiers International interviewed 150 girls formerly associated with some of the country's multiple armed groups.

Tue
04
Jul

UK: New report on the effects of army training on attitudes, health, and behaviour

The First Ambush? Effects of army training and employment

Veterans for Peace UK has released a new report exploring the effects of army employment on recruits, particularly during initial training. The report, drawing on veterans’ testimony and around 200 studies, finds that the risk of violent offending and heavy drinking rises after joining the army.

Dan joined the army in 2006, at 18, having grown up in an area of high unemployment. He was told that military discipline would keep him out of trouble. After training he deployed to Iraq, and when he came home he assaulted a warrant officer. He was sentenced to 18 months in military prison.

Tue
04
Jul

Israel: Atalia Ben-Abba exempted from conscription

Conscientious objector Atalia Ben-Abba has been exempted from military service after spending 110 days in military prison for her refusal to join army. Ben-Abba's release was on grounds of unsuitability, after her request to be recognized as a conscientious objector was rejected.

In her statement following her release, Ben-Abba said “The army can call the waiver [from mandatory conscription] whatever it wants, but the fact of the matter remains that it gave me a waiver as a result of my simple refusal to participate in a system that uses violent means to oppress another people, which has imposed an occupation upon it for 50 years, and is imposing a siege, the consequences of which are yet to be seen.”

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