1. Summary of concerns
The opposition group, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) systematically recruited and used child soldiers throughout the 25-year armed conflict with Sri Lankan government forces which began in the early 1980s and ended in May 2009. Boys and girls were forcibly recruited and deployed into armed combat as well as being subjected to harsh conditions and military discipline. Children also "voluntarily" enlisted into the LTTE ranks.
(Kinshasa, 26 February 2010) Mai Mai militias have been among the most prolific recruiters of children in eastern Congo in recent years, yet virtually nothing has been done to lessen the vulnerability of boys and girls from exploitation by these groups, stated the Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers today.
In eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), where child soldier recruitment and use is an entrenched feature of ongoing armed conflict, Mai Mai are among the most prolific recruiters and users of children. The Mai Mai - a collective term referring to a range of local militias - may not be as militarily or politically significant as other armed groups in the region, but they have been active throughout the Congo?s two wars and since.
The Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers ('the Coalition') and the Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict ('Watchlist') welcome the report of the Special Envoy of the Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict to Sri Lanka ('Special Envoy' hereafter) following his mission from 5-11 December 2009. The following points are made in response to the report.
Dans l'est de la République démocratique du Congo (RDC), où le recrutement et l'utilisation d'enfants soldats sont une caractéristique profondément ancrée du conflit armé persistant, les Maï Maï font partie des groupes qui recrutent et utilisent le plus grand nombre d'enfants. Les Maï Maï - terme collectif désignant un ensemble de milices locales - ne sont peut-être pas aussi importants sur le plan militaire ou politique que d'autres groupes armés de la région, mais ils ont été actifs tout au long des deux guerres du Congo et depuis lors.