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21 Jun 2007 description

New York, 21 June 2007 - Ms. Radhika Coomaraswamy, UN Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict welcomes the judgment of the Special Court for Sierra Leone against three former leaders of the Sierra Leone's former Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC).

This marks the first conviction by an international tribunal for the recruitment and use of child soldiers in armed conflict.

"This first verdict sends a strong signal to the perpetrators and it will have a crucial deterrence effect. These crimes have to stop.