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Children Associated With Armed Forces and Armed Groups

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines the children and youth are that are being recruited into governmental armies and different armed groups and where they come from. Once children have become members of the armed forces or armed groups child protection officers working with child soldiers in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have stated that “[c]hildren flee from the armed groups as soon as they can”. It was found that the children that were vulnerable to recruitment were those children that had become separated from their parents such as after an armed attack, in particular street children not receiving any other care. To prevent children from joining an armed group voluntarily or by force, this study showed how crucial the role of the parents is. The parents were consistently identified by both children and adults as the most important people that prevented children from being recruited.

Keywords:armed forces; armed groups; children; Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)



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