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Impact of children recruitment in armed group, case of north kivu province

par Julien SHEMITIMA
UNIGOM - Licence 2011

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(1) Child means any human being under the age of 18 years, in accordance with article 1 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

(2) Recruitment and use of children. Recruitment includes acts of voluntary or forced conscription or enlistment to any armed force or armed group. The Paris Principles states that the use of children includes the use of minors in any capacity, such as, but not limited to: fighters, cooks, porters, messengers, sexual slaves or spies.

(3) Exploitation" of a child means the use of a child in the course of work or other activities for the benefit of others and to the detriment of the physical or mental health, development and education of the child. Exploitation includes, but is not limited to, the exploitation of the prostitution or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labor or services, including the forced commission of a crime, slavery or practical analogues.

(4) Killing of Children includes any action that results to the death of one or more children.

(5) Maiming of children, on the other hand, includes any action that results to permanent or debilitating injury, defacing, scarring, and mutilation to one or more children.

(6) Attacks on Schools & Hospitals. Attacks on schools and hospitals involves the occupation, shelling, targeting for use in propaganda, destruction (partially or completely), and causing harm to the school or hospital facility and its personnel. For this violation, a school is any structure, with clear boundaries and recognized by the community as a learning facility. Hospital would include any facility where the sick and wounded are gathered for treatment.

(7) Rape and great sexual violence. This violation includes acts of sexual violence such as rape, enforced sterilization, forced prostitution, forced marriage or pregnancy, as well as sexual slavery.

(8) Abduction of Children would include kidnapping, hostage-taking, illegal detention, of any child in the context of armed conflict. Usually, this violation is committed along other violations such as recruitment, rape, or maiming.

(9) Denial of Humanitarian Access involves the intentional barring by physical force or administrative barriers, of humanitarian aid, supplies, services, and personnel, into and out of an affected area.

(10) Protection is set of activities aimed at ensuring full respect for human rights in accordance with the text and spirit of human law, international human law and refugee law.


(11) Prevention of recruitment means provisions that would prohibit the recruitment and use of children in the armed force/ group would be one of the key components of the Action Plan. This would mean that the armed force/ group would desist from engaging the services

of children in all their activities. (12) Release and Reintegration. Activities aimed to
support the release of children in the armed force/ group and facilitate their reintegration into civilian life.



The reasons children are recruited by armed group are complex, and it's depending on the situation. It appears more Children are not only registered alongside adults, but identified as being targeted, because the use of children has various advantages to groups.

According to NGO and Monusco's report, armed Group recruit in order to use them as fetish, fighter, spy, porter, human shield, sexual slave and others services. Children live bad experiences in bush under yoke of armed group.

In North kivu, armed Group need to have a great number of combatant for maintaining its power in front of enemies. Chiefs of armed group know that if they are less in number then they will not be able to defend themselves at the moment of attack. So, they at the most of time to keep strong and to be able to resist against AFDRC attacks or others armed group.

Both Nyatura rebellious and FDLR operate in Lubero and Rutshuru territories. They established their camp in Virunga National Park. So sometime they kidnap and abduct children in village surrounding. Among children, they often abduct young boy. However, they could take young girls. It's also important to know that among the list of active armed group, both NDC renovate and MAIMAI MAZEMBE as well as RAIYA MUTOMBOKI which operates in Masisi and Walikale territories had committed violations against children.

One of Consequences of children recruitment, some people run away dangerous village and they go to live in another one which is secured. Surely, there is village in which children undergo a great risk. Such situation affect education program when it known that the armed Group can abduct children in school environment or in the way of school.

It's very important to know that if children are not only forced by armed Group but other children choose to join deliberately armed Group. Surely, such children don't appreciate their conditions of family's life. They hope if they become military or combatant they will have power and be able to satisfy their needs. That is also a consequence of parents who failed education of their children and to satisfy to theirs needs.

Even if a child opted himself to join voluntary an armed Group. The armed Group must not accept to recruit him.

Monusco child Protection section initiate actions to prevent recruitment of children. This Section interfere to protect children who are victims of grave violations. They work to provide protection of civilian in period of armed conflict. 9

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