Issue: Child Soldiers|
Philosophy 1301 w/ Colby Glass
Facts from Human Rights Watch about child soldiers:
- As many as 300,000 children are currently serving in government or rebel forces. Some are as young as eight years old.
- Child soldiers have been reported in 33 on-going or recent armed conflicts in every region of the world.
- Technological advances in weaponry have contributed to the increased use of children as soldiers. Lightweight automatic weapons are simple to operate and light enough for children.
- Orphans, refugees, and the poor are most vulnerable to recruitment.
- In countries like Afghanistan and Sudan where education is rare, children are lured into armies by promises of education.
- Both girls and boys are used as child soldiers. In case studies in El Salvadore, Ethiopia, and Uganda, almost a third of the child soldiers were reported to be girls. Girls may be raped, or in some cases, given to military commanders as "wives."
- It is not uncommon to send children in to minefields ahead of older soldiers.
- Children have been forced to commit atrocities... that stigmatize them and ensure that they cannot return to their homes.
- The most common physical injuries that child soldiers suffer are loss of hearing, loss of limbs, and blindness.
- No peace treaty to date has recognized the existence of child soldiers, or made provisions for their rehabilitation and reintegration into society.
For more information, start at the following site:
Stop the Use of Child Soldiers from Human Rights Watch
Please send comments to:
Colby Glass, MLIS
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