Juba, 30th August 2018. Reintegration of children is crucial to ensure the sustainability of peace and security, says Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict.
Virginia Gamba calls for regional and sub-regional organizations to engage with the United Nations to support her efforts for preventive measures, assessment and dissemination of best practices and lessons learned on children and armed conflict.
The Special Representative notes that cross border violations against children are increasing in complexity of response and prevention efforts.
She stresses that children are excluded and often stranded in hostile territories, which makes them particularly vulnerable to re-recruitment, sexual violence, and slavery or trafficking.
The official urges governments to be engaged in operations to counter violent extremism, to uphold the principle that children allegedly associated with armed groups be seen primarily as victims.
The Special Representative calls for detention only as a last resort and for the shortest period of time, in accordance with international juvenile justice standards.