The Recruitment Of Child Soldiers

2959 Words Feb 6th, 2015 12 Pages
Introduction
The recruitment of child soldiers to enact warfare in defense of state or non-state missions has been on the rise particularly within the African continent. Alongside this inhumane act, is the growing awareness that returning veterans are experiencing mental health issues or Posttraumatic Stress Disorder resulting from living violence and trauma. Although both issues are unique, both are related since, as child soldiers mature into adults, mental illness interferes with their ability to function and can be a danger society. The United Nations has produced measures to end and prevent the recruitment of child soldiers, however, support for reunification and rehabilitation is needed for those young adults returning from a childhood of violence.

1.1 Child Soldiers: Defined
A child soldier is anyone under the age of eighteen recruited into working for either state or non-state armed forces requiring to perform a range of jobs including combat, laying mines and explosives, scouting, spying, acting as decoys, couriers and armed guards. Further, child soldiers may be forced into performing functions such as cooking, domestic labour and sexual slavery. Some children are even under the age of ten when they are recruited and are more likely to be forced into combat if they are from a poor background with limited education and live in combat zones. Children who are not forced may volunteer because of societal pressure to earn income, have food and gain security. The…

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