X hits on this document

PDF document

This book is a product of a research project called ‘voices of youth’ carried out - page 84 / 125

296 views

0 shares

0 downloads

0 comments

84 / 125

A Lost Generation: Young People and Conflict in Africa

are such opportunities so limited? And why, when the international community and national governments are so concerned with re-establishing governance and democratisation in post-conflict situations, are young people not given more encouragement to organise for themselves?

The policy framework

The international community places considerable emphasis on the vulnerability of youth and children in conflict and has created a number of initiatives to

support them.

rights

legislation

In addition to

(referred

to

in

several key more detail

instruments of below), the UN

international human Secretary-General has

appointed a Special Representative a special UN Programme for Youth key issues (United Nations 2007).

for Children and Armed Conflict, addressing youth and conflict as

and

has set up

one

of several

Children’s special vulnerabilities in violent conflict came to the

community’s

attention

during

the

Second

World

War.

Article

77

international of the 1949

Geneva Convention marked the first official protection of children, stating that ‘children

international statement on the legal shall be the object of special respect

and

shall

be

protected

against

any

indecent

assault.

The

parties

to

the

conflict

shall

provide

them

with the

care

for any

other

reason.’

This

and aid they require, whether because of their early document addressing the vulnerability of

age or young

people in conflict was supplemented by the Geneva Convention and its and II in 1977, which discouraged states’ use of under-18s to carry arms, established the legal concept of children as victims during times of war.

Protocols I and which

The 1990 Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) established children’s protection from violence, abuse and exploitation as a right to be upheld even during times of armed conflict. Responsibility for upholding this right falls on parents and legal guardians, and also on states themselves, which are enjoined to implement legislative, administrative, social and educational safeguards against all forms of violence, neglect, injury or abuse, physical and mental. The African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (drawn up in 1990) reinforces these rights in the African context, and requires states to protect children from (amongst other things) sexual exploitation, torture and enlistment in armed forces. It commits African states to protecting the civilian population, including children, from all forms of abuse and violence during the course of hostilities, including internal hostilities and tension.

The 1990s saw a change in the nature of armed conflict with the end of the Cold War and the rise in small-scale conflicts throughout the world. Reports of ‘child soldiers’ became frequent during this period, challenging the image of children

  • 3

Document info
Document views296
Page views296
Page last viewedSat Dec 03 21:49:33 UTC 2016
Pages125
Paragraphs1928
Words52641

Comments