Child Soldiers in Miliary Services

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“CHILD SOLDIERS”
Guy Goodwin-Gill and Ilene Cohn, Child Soldiers, The Role of Children in Armed Conflicts, A Study on Behalf of the Henry Dunant Institute, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1994, 228 pp.

Reviewed by
Styliani Antoniou

‘Child soldiers’ is an inside look at the widen existence of armed children who participate in hostilities. In this study, Professor Goodwin-Gill and Dr Cohn emphasize the ways in which international humanitarian law fails to provide effective protection, particularly in the internal conflicts, examine the consequences of children participation in armed conflicts and provide factual suggestions for preventing the recruitment.

More analytically, the authors examine all the aspects that lead children to bear arms by focusing on conflicts in Guatemala, Israeli, El Salvador, Sri Lanka and Liberia. The book firstly responds to the question of what the child is and secondly to what are the reasons for children participating in armed conflicts. At the end, significant suggestions are given on how to prevent and halt the recruitment of children into armed groups.

The authors, Professor Guy Goodwin-Gill and Dr Ilene Cohn, are two eminent lawyers whose work on Child soldiers was commissioned by the Henry Dunant Institute, the research centre of the Red Cross movement in Geneva. It is probably not coincidence that this book was launched in 1994, three years after the Conference on Children of War, taken place in Stockholm and organized by the Swedish Red

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