Violations against Afghan children continue: Ban
KABUL (PAN): United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has identified underage recruitment, killings, abductions and sexual violence as some of the grave violations committed against children in Afghanistan’s conflict in 2012.
In his annual report to the 15-member Security Council on Wednesday, Ban said 1,304 conflict-related child casualties, including 489 deaths, were documented in Afghanistan by a UN-led independent body.
In the 51-page report, he said: “The vast majority of the incidents resulted from attacks with improvised explosive devices (399 child casualties) and suicide attacks, including by child suicide bombers (110 child casualties).”
Before discussing the report, the Security Council condemned Tuesday's suicide assault near the Supreme Court in Kabul that killed 17 civilians and injured another 40 -- many of them women and children.
The report, which covers the period from January to December 2012, attributed most of the casualties in Afghanistan – 283 cases of killing and 507 of injuring children – to militants and 90 killings and 82 injuries to pro-government forces.
With verification of such a challenge, Ban said 66 cases of recruitment and use of children as young as eight years were documented by the UN-led Country Task Force. The violators included both pro- and anti-government forces.
The armed groups recruited at least 10 children to conduct suicide attacks, despite the Taliban's rejection of reports that they recruited, used or abducted children. Ban said the Afghan police and the Afghan Local Police were reportedly responsible for 19 cases of underage recruitment in 2012.
The Country Task Force also noted 18 incidents of abduction involving 67 boys, by both parties to the conflict, calling sexual violence another grave violation committed against children by the fighters, Afghan and international forces.
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