Children and Armed Conflict

Children and Armed Conflict

From the statement for Universal Children's Day by Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General Radhika Coomaraswamy and Under-Secretary-General Alain Le Roy:

November 20 is Universal Children’s Day, a day to celebrate youth and to demonstrate our universal belief that childhood is sacred for all girls and boys. Millions of children around the world, however, are denied a safe home and community, a functioning school and a protected playground. Growing up in conflict, their innocence is stolen when they are abducted from schools, recruited to fight, wounded or killed, separated from their families and emotionally as well as physically scarred for life.

The statement also highlights some successes in the effort to end the use of children as soldiers:

In a joint effort by our offices, UNICEF and other UN partners, we have achieved notable success in protecting children affected by conflict.  In 2010 alone, with the assistance of UN peacekeepers from the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO), armed forces and groups in the country freed over 1000 girls and boys from their ranks. The United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) and UNICEF facilitated the demobilization of over 200 children and the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) played an important role in the release of close to 1000 children over the last year. In Afghanistan, Myanmar and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, three agreements for the release of child fighters are currently being prepared.


Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)