Senior officers from the Sudanese Armed Forces trained on protection of children in armed conflict
On 3 April 2018, senior Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) officers attended a UNAMID-supported training on protection of children in armed conflict and promoting local ownership of child protection.
The one-day workshop, held in Nyala, South Darfur, was organized by the Mission’s Child Protection Unit (CPU) and is part of ongoing efforts to sensitize parties to the conflict on issues pertinent to child rights and child protection. The objective is to minimize grave violations against children including preventing and ending the recruitment of children into armed activity.
Boubacar Dieng, Head, UNAMID CPU, explained that the training aims at educate all SAF officers on the importance of protecting the rights of children in conflict situations, thereby contribute to a lasting peace in Sudan, in general, and Darfur, in particular. He emphasized the importance of protecting girls and women around internally displaced persons camps, which will, in turn, build confidence and trust between the government and the displaced population.
On his part, the 16th Division Commander’s representative, Brigadier-General Mamoun Abderouf underscored the SAF’s commitment to a zero tolerance policy on use or recruitment of child soldiers and stated that there are strict guidelines banning any form of violations against children. He commended UNAMID’s efforts to build the capacity of SAF officers.
Since its inception, UNAMID has engaged repeatedly with parties to the conflict in Darfur, resulting in the establishment of six Action Plans and the issuance of 11 Command Orders to end recruitment or use of children as soldiers, and to stop other grave violations, including abduction of children, killing and maiming of children, and sexual violence against children as well as attacks on schools and hospitals.
The Mission has also supported a Darfur-wide campaign— ‘Protect Children/Support Efforts of UNAMID – No sexual relations with minors.’ The campaign – part of global United Nations’ efforts to protect children – aims to raise awareness among peacekeepers regarding child sexual abuse and exploitation, and establish a zero tolerance policy.