Warring parties in Yemen commit to stop using child soldiers

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Over half of Mazrak camp’s residents in Yemen are children under 18-years old, many of them are malnourished © Hugh Macleod/IRIN

The parties involved in conflict in Yemen have committed to end the recruitment and use of child soldiers.

That's what Leila Zerrougui, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict told reporters on Monday following her trip to the Middle Eastern country.

Ms. Zerrougui said her three-day mission in Yemen, at the invitation of the government, was productive because she was able to meet with all the parties involved in the use of child soldiers.

"With the conflict in 2011 all parties involved in the conflict recruited children so that's for me very important and particularly, as you know, we have four parties that are listed: Yemeni Armed Forces, the First Armed Division, Al Houti and also the tribal militias. For us it was important to get the commitment and to start to elaborate an action plan and start the implementation."

Duration: 28″

Ms Zerrougui said the most important outcome of her mission to Yemen was what she described as the strong commitment from the government to stop the use of child soldiers.

She said the situation in Yemen is very tense and children continue to pay a very high price in the conflict and instability in the country.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 1’18″

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