Last year, 2019, the phenomenon of child recruitment spread throughout the world, especially in many countries of the African continent. It was estimated that the number of children recruited into armed conflict reached 300,000. While there are 250 million children living in areas experiencing armed conflict, 150 million of them are directly affected by those conflicts.
More than 24,000 children have been recruited or exploited by armed groups in Africa in the past five years. African countries come at the forefront of the world in which this phenomenon is spread, at the forefront of which is Somalia, then South Sudan, then Nigeria, then the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and then Central Africa.
Maat Foundation for Peace, Development and Human Rights warns that this situation will continue to spread in 2020, and calls on the international community to do more to eradicate this phenomenon.
The Maat Foundation calls for the activation of Article 77 of the First Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions. Which states that “the parties to the conflict must take all possible measures so that children who have not attained the age of fifteen do not take a direct part in hostilities, and in particular refrain from recruiting them into their armed forces.” As well as activating the requirements of the Optional Convention on the Rights of the Child regarding the involvement of children in armed conflict (for the year 2000) on states to raise the minimum age for compulsory recruitment to 18 years.