Sri Lanka

Report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Sri Lanka (S/2011/793)

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The present report is the fourth report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Sri Lanka, prepared pursuant to Security Council resolutions 1612 (2005) and 1882 (2008). It covers the period from 1 February 2009 to 30 June 2011 and provides information on the prevailing situation in Sri Lanka, on the progress achieved and on compliance with commitments to end the grave violations and abuses that occurred during the final months of the conflict in early 2009. It also provides follow-up to the conclusions reached by the Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict on 13 June 2007 (S/AC.51/2007/9), 21 October 2008 (S/AC.51/2008/11) and 3 June 2010 (S/AC.51/2010/2).

The report points to advances made by the national authorities before and since the declaration by the Government of Sri Lanka that the conflict in the country had ended in May 2009. In particular, it highlights the progress achieved in separating children from Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal (TMVP) and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and in reintegrating them into society, as requested by the Security Council in its conclusions and as spelled out by the Special Envoy of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, Major General (retd.) Patrick Cammaert. It details the efforts undertaken by the Government with the support of the United Nations to trace children who were separated from their parents in the final stages of the conflict and addresses the need to further such efforts.

The report also discusses a number of concerns, the primary of which are the need to establish accountability for the recruitment and use of children by remnants of TMVP and to locate missing children. It outlines a series of credible allegations made by the parents of children who are missing or who were killed during the final phase of the conflict.

The report contains a series of recommendations on strengthening the commendable efforts undertaken by the Government on behalf of children formerly associated with TMVP and LTTE and encourages the Government to investigate violations and to continue to address outstanding protection issues with regard to children affected by the conflict.