Children and Armed Conflict – Security Council Open Debate

About the author(s):

Katharine Fortin is an Associate Professor at Utrecht University where she teaches IHL and IHRL. Before joining Utrecht University, she worked at the ICTY, ICC and Norton Rose Fulbright. She is the author of The Accountability of Armed Groups under Human Rights Law (Oxford University Press, 2017) which won the 2018 Lieber Prize. She has written widely about the framework of law that applies to armed groups in non-international armed conflicts and is one of the editors of the Armed Groups and International Law blog.

598942Leila_ZerrouguiYesterday, the bi-annual open debate on children and armed conflict took place at the UN Security Council. UN Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, Leila Zerrougui introduced the UN Security General’s report on children and armed conflict (UN Doc No. S/2014/339) covering the period January to December 2013.

In her address to the Security Council, Leila Zerrougui said that the multiplication of crises affecting children since the beginning of 2014 is creating unprecedented challenges that overshadow progress to date to protect them from the impact of war. She said that she was appalled by the total disregard for human life shown by extremist armed groups such as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and Boko Haram. She stated that the situation also remains dire in Syria.

The Secretary General’s report provides detailed updates on the following situations on the agenda of the Security Council: Afghanistan, CAR, Chad, Ivory Coast, DRC, Iraq, Israel and the State of Palestine, Lebanon, Libya, LRA activities, Mali, Myanmar, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. It also provides detailed updates on the following situations which are not on the Security Council agenda: Colombia, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines and the Southern border provinces of Thailand.

A link to Leila Zerrougui’s full statement can be found here and a summary of the debate can be found here.

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