South Sudan vows to release 1,500 child soldiers

Former child soldiers walking away from guns as part of a demobilization ceremony

The Government of South Sudan has agreed to support the release and reintegration of 1,500 child soldiers, according to the UN Mission in South Sudan.

The numbers of children associated with rebel militia groups in the country remains unknown.

The release of 53 child soldiers in Western Bahr-El-Ghazal State on Friday has been described as the "biggest single release" of children associated with armed forces and groups since South Sudan's independence.

Meanwhile, the South Sudan Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration Commission has been working with UNICEF since 2005 to provide a fresh start for these children.

Together, they have established guidelines on the release of children associated with armed groups as well as the prevention of future recruitment and use of children.

The recruitment or use of children by armed groups is a violation of international law and is prohibited by the Child Act of South Sudan, says UNICEF.

Filed under Today's News.
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