Iraq + 3 more

Children and Armed Conflict Monthly Update – April 2018

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News and Press Release
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Recommendations to the Security Council

IRAQ

Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) are listed for recruitment and use of children. ISIL is listed for recruitment and use, killing and maiming, rape and other forms of sexual violence, abductions, and attacks on schools and/or hospitals. In April, the Secretary-General (SG) will report on UNAMI’s progress pursuant to SCR 2367 (2017). In his last report (S/2018/42 para. 54) from January, covering the third quarter of 2017, the SG noted that the Country Task Force on Monitoring and Reporting (CTFMR) verified 20 incidents resulting in 14 children killed and 12 maimed, as well as the recruitment of 30 children and five attacks on schools. The report also mentions incidents of children wounded by explosive remnants and improvised devices. Council Members should: Urge all parties to end the use of weapons as prohibited under international humanitarian law, and urgently prioritize marking and clearing of explosive remnants of war which contribute to the increase in child casualties; Encourage the Government to ensure implementation of age verification mechanisms and procedures to prevent recruitment of children, in line with Law No. 3/2010, article 30 (2), and release children currently in PMF ranks to child protection actors; Urge the Government to take concrete actions to ensure accountability and end impunity, including through prompt investigation and prosecution of parties responsible for grave violations against children; In discussing the provision of support for the reintegration of children formerly associated with ISIL, as mentioned by the SG (S/2018/42 para. 54), remind all parties that children should be considered primarily as victims entitled to full protection of their human rights, and that alternatives to detention should be given preference whenever possible.

THE UNITED STATES IS THE LEAD COUNTRY ON IRAQ.

SOUTH SUDAN

The Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), the SPLA in Opposition (SPLA-IO), and White Army are all listed for recruitment and use of children. The SPLA and SPLA-IO are also listed for killing and maiming. The SPLA is additionally listed for rape and other forms of sexual violence, and abductions of children. In 2014, the Government of South Sudan re-committed to its 2012 action plan. The SPLA-IO signed an action plan with the UN in December 2015 to end and prevent the recruitment and use and killing and maiming of children. In February, the Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan issued its report pursuant to Human Rights Council Resolution 34/25. The Commission documented instances of all six grave violations against children and cited a report by the Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangements Monitoring Mechanism (CTSAMM) on child soldiers, where they suggest that recruitment is still ongoing throughout the country. In his last report (S/2018/163, para. 44), covering November 2017 to February 2018, the SG stated that the CTFMR verified 42 incidents of grave violations affecting children. Council Members should: Urge the Government to take concrete actions to ensure accountability and end impunity by promoting the work of the national justice system to establish a special unit focused on conflict-related crimes as mentioned by the SG (S/2018/163 para. 36); Echoing the recommendation made by the Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan (A/ HRC/37/71 para. 136 (c)), urge all parties to release all children within their ranks to child protection actors; and to that extent welcome the release of over 300 children by armed groups in Yambio, Western Equatoria State, and encourage the Government to take immediate measures to facilitate children’s reintegration and recovery; Echoing the SG (S/2018/163, para. 69), urge all parties to allow rapid and unimpeded humanitarian access to all civilians in need, in compliance with international humanitarian law; Urge the Government to honor its commitment to implement the Guidelines for Protecting Schools and Universities from Military Use during Armed Conflict made through the Safe Schools Declaration. THE UNITED STATES IS THE LEAD COUNTRY ON SOUTH SUDAN. POLAND CHAIRS THE SOUTH SUDAN SANCTIONS COMMITTEE.