Statement by Chairman of Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict

22 March 2011
SC/10205-HR/5047

Statement by Chairman of Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict

22 March 2011
Security Council
SC/10205 HR/5047
Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Statement by Chairman of Security Council Working Group

 

on Children and Armed Conflict

 

The following statement by the Chairman of the Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict was issued in New York, 22 March:

At its twenty-ninth meeting on 25 February 2011, the Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict agreed, in connection with the examination of the fourth report of the Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict in Somalia (document S/2010/577), to address messages to all parties to the armed conflict in Somalia, in particular those groups mentioned in the report of the Secretary-General, through a public statement by the Chairman of the Working Group:

(a)            Expressing deep concern about the continuing violations and abuses committed against children in Somalia by parties to the conflict and urging the immediate implementation of all previous conclusions of the Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict in Somalia (document S/AC.51/2007/14 and document S/AC.51/2008/14);

(b)            Recalling the Working Group’s strong condemnation of the recruitment and use of children by all non-State parties to the conflict, particularly Al-Shabaab, and all other violations and abuses committed against children in Somalia, and calling upon all parties to immediately halt the recruitment and use of children, in violation of applicable international law, and to ensure their immediate release;

(c)            Expressing deep concern about the killing and maiming of children and other civilians, in violation of applicable international law, in the course of military operations, reminding all parties to the conflict of their obligations under international law and urging them to make all efforts to protect children through strict adherence to the principles of international humanitarian law in the conduct of hostilities;

(d)            Strongly urging Al-Shabaab, Hizbul Islam, clan militias and all other armed groups to immediately and without preconditions cease the recruitment and use of children, release children associated with armed groups, enter into dialogue with the United Nations and to prepare time-bound action plans in line with Security Council resolutions 1539 (2004), 1612 (2005) and 1882 (2009), and expressing concern in this regard about the impact on children of the announced merger of Al-Shabaab and Hizbul Islam;

(e)            Expressing deep concern about efforts by Al-Shabaab to punish teachers and parents who refuse to send children to military training camps;

(f)            Expressing concern about cases of rape and sexual violence perpetrated against children, especially in camps for internally displaced persons;

(g)            Also expressing concern about the continuing lack of humanitarian access in Somalia and its detrimental impact on millions of children, particularly in the central and southern regions, and calling upon all parties to the conflict to ensure unhindered and safe humanitarian access to children, respect the exclusively humanitarian nature and impartiality of aid and respect the work of all humanitarian organizations, without distinction;

(h)            Calling upon all parties to the conflict to immediately cease attacks or threats of attacks against and the occupation of schools and hospitals, in contravention of applicable international law, and to maintain the neutrality and security of civilian institutions that provide shelter and tend to the needs of children, in accordance with international humanitarian law.

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For information media • not an official record
For information media. Not an official record.