UN Security Council adopts the historical Resolution 2143(2014) to condemn child recruitment in armed conflict

7th March 2014, New York, US – An historical landmark was laid last Friday in New York when the UN Security Council, expressing deep concern about the military use of schools by armed forces and non-Sate armed groups, unanimously adopted the Resolution S/RES/2143 (2014). The Resolution strongly condemns “all violations of applicable international law involving the recruitment and use of children by parties to armed conflict” and urges all Member States in armed conflict around the world to respect and protect schools from attacks and use by armed forces or groups.

The Resolution constitutes a milestone in the struggle to stop child recruitment in armed conflicts as it also includes, for the first time, concrete recommendations on actions to take in order to “put an end to such practices and take special measures to protect children”.

Among these, strong emphasis is put on the inclusion of “child protection in military training and standard operating procedures, as well as in military guidance” and on the need for “United Nations entities and United Nations peacekeeping troop and police-contributing countries [to] undertake targeted and operational trainings for the preparation of United Nations mission personnel including troop and police contingents on their contribution in preventing violations against children so as to give all mission personnel the ability to effectively recognize, report and respond to violations and abuses committed against children and to successfully support child protection activities for better implementation of their respective mandates”.

In these months, the Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative – founded by former force commander of the UN Peacekeeping Mission in Rwanda, General Roméo Dallaire – has been strongly backing the preparatory process that led to the adoption of this historical resolution. In the midst of these efforts it also developed, in close collaboration with UNITAR, a training on “Child soldiers and Security Forces” which promises to become soon the point of reference for the trainings related to child protection issues into military training.

The full text of the Resolution can be found at
http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2014/sc11309.doc.htm