At its 58th formal meeting on 17 May 2016, the Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict examined the third report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in the Central African Republic (S/2016/133), covering the period from January 2011 to December 2015, which was introduced by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict. A representative from the Permanent Mission of the Central African Republic to the United Nations also addressed the Working Group.
The members of the Working Group welcomed the report of the SecretaryGeneral, submitted in accordance with Security Council resolutions 1612 (2005), 1882 (2009), 1998 (2011), 2068 (2012), 2143 (2014) and 2225 (2015) and took note of the analysis and recommendations contained therein.
The members of the Working Group expressed grave concern over serious violations and abuses committed throughout the reporting period against children in the context of armed conflict in the Central African Republic by parties to the conflict. They noted the significant increase in the recruitment and use of children by armed groups, the killing and maiming of children in brutal reprisal attacks and the recurrence of rape and other forms of sexual violence against children. They also deplored the abduction of children, committed largely by the Lord ’s Resistance Army, and noted the worrisome rise in abduction cases in the past year.
They also expressed deep concern over the allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse by United Nations peacekeepers and non-United Nations forces against children in the Central African Republic and took note of measures being taken by the United Nations and investigations undertaken by national authorities to address the issue.
The members of the Working Group emphasized the need to fight impunity and hold accountable all perpetrators of violations and abuses against children. They further highlighted the importance of rebuilding State institutions and child protection systems in the Central African Republic, including by ensuring access to education and health care for children.
The representative of the Permanent Mission of the Central African Republic affirmed the commitment of the new Government to work with all relevant parties, including the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict and the United Nations, to end and prevent the recruitment and use of children in violation of applicable international law. The statement made by the representative of the Permanent Mission of the Central African Republic to the United Nations is annexed to the present conclusions.
Further to the meeting and subject to and consistent with applicable international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, including resolutions 1612 (2005), 1882 (2009), 1998 (2011), 2068 (2012), 2143 (2014) and 2225 (2015) on children and armed conflict, resolution 2272 (2016) on United Nations peacekeeping operations, and resolution 2286 (2016) on protection of civilians in armed conflict, the Working Group agreed to the direct action as set out below.