Child soldiering in uganda and sierra leone

Education Vocational training These programs focus on establishing long-term support networks and reintegration schemes which can continue to sustainably function without the long-term assistance from the third party organisations previously discussed. This long-term vision requires political, economic and social support. It also creates responsible arms management mechanisms. This is a two part journey; part one being the processing of soldiers and part two involves reinsertion of combatants.

Child soldiering in uganda and sierra leone

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Other explanations for civil war, and its reasons, such as the greed and grievance debate, have been challenged and will not be tackled in this article.

Within a time span of a decade, according to Paul Collier et al. It is in these types of environments that we are most likely to encounter the use of child soldiers. Future recruitment can be prevented if international agencies know the underlying causes for employing child soldiers.

Therefore, two major questions require further exploration. First, why are child soldiers recruited at all? Second, why and how do children join armed forces and groups? Not all recruitment can be said to happen involuntarily. In other words, the push and pull factors involved have to be critically assessed.

The Reasons for Recruitment The benefits of recruiting child soldiers seem to be concealed when first approaching the topic. Why would any army or military movement rely on the inferior physical power and inexperience of children?

Social Issues: Child Soldiers

They are also psychologically more vulnerable than many adults, who already have a more shaped personality. Since younger children, in particular, can lack a sense of fear, they might be preferred over adults because they accept more dangerous tasks without scrutinising them.

If parents, family and friends are lost, children might: They can be psychologically manipulated through a deliberate programme of starvation, thirst, fatigue, voodoo, indoctrination, beatings, the use of drugs and alcohol, and even sexual abuse to render them compliant to the new norms of child soldiering.

Child soldiers are able to take part in combat, due to the widespread and global proliferation of small arms — mainly AK assault rifles, the so-called Kalashnikovs.

Abduction is the most common method by which child soldier recruitment takes place.

Child soldiering in uganda and sierra leone

In Rwanda, killings took place by either using a panga, which is a machete, or a masu, a club studded with nails. Forced Recruitment Abduction is the most common method by which child soldier recruitment takes place.

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In short, there are two primary ways children can become child soldiers: Whereas push factors first drive children away from their known environment, pull factors encourage them to join the fighting forces. Pull factors include — paradoxically — seeking security in fighting forces, provision of food, a sense of belonging and ideology or group identity, as well as economic reasons such as gaining profit.

All these factors are used to motivate group members, which is why allegiance is seldom achieved by pecuniary rewards but rather by certain socialisation processes. One remaining significant question is why the use of child soldiers differs from area to area or country to country?

It is important to realise that numerous reasons are valid, and that it is tempting but misleading to make sweeping generalisations.

However, it is crucial not to omit so-called accessibility factors, which describe to which extent children are easily accessible for recruiters. For recruiters, easy access to large groups of children is provided in refugee and internally displaced persons IDP camps.

Here, international law assumes that since people are internally displaced, their national governments will take care of them. Political scientist Sarah K. Lischer recognises two main patterns by which children are recruited in refugee and IDP camps: The presence of non-civilian militants among refugees can lead to refugee militarisation, and subsequently to the recruitment of child soldiers.

Insecure camps, on the other hand, pave the path for the abduction of refugee children by militant groups, while the insecurity path over time leaves room for potential child soldier recruiters to infiltrate the camps and indoctrinate children and adolescents.

Due to this realisation, non-governmental organisation workers and volunteers often try to protect refugee and IDP camps by their mere physical presence, trying to deter recruiters: Inriots in a camp for internally displaced persons in Darfur, Sudan, forced the evacuation of aid workers and journalists from the camp.

The only security force consisted of a handful of unarmed African Union soldiers. Conclusion Now the question is whether we will commit ourselves to the protection of our most precious heritage, our children. Each individual child has a different life story and upbringing, as well as individual reasons to either try to stay away from armed forces and groups or to join them — if they have not already been forced to join the ranks.

Again, what has to be borne in mind is the need to look beyond conventional wisdom and stereotypes: For some children, joining a guerrilla movement might be the most attractive alternative to stay alive, given the social, structural and political conditions.

In other words, the universal condemnation of the recruitment of child soldiers needs to take the issue of alternatives into consideration. What if the alternative is worse than becoming a child soldier?

If the recruitment and re-recruitment of children as soldiers is to be prevented, then the economic, social and individual environment of potential recruits must be taken into account.

It makes no sense to simply let it happen and then provide aid after the damage has occurred.Part of a series on: Child soldiers; Main articles; Child soldiers; History of child soldiers; Impact; Rehabilitation and reintegration; Issues; Child abduction; Child sexual abuse.

Similar to the LRA, the RUF in Sierra Leone used abduction as one of its main recruitment methods, but it should not be forgotten that “all sides had recruited children, who were the main victims of forced recruitment” 25 – meaning that the pro-government Civil Defence Forces (CDF), the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) and the.

This perspective suggests that the only way to rid the world of child soldiering is to rid the world of war. But history provides little encouragement that this is possible. This study’s findings challenge the common perception of “child soldiering” as a male-only phenomenon. Girls in fighting forces in Northern Uganda, Sierra Leone, and Mozambique: Their lives during and after war.

the role of stigma in the association between war experiences and psychosocial adjustment among former child soldiers in. Sierra Leone's Former Child Soldiers: A Follow-up Study of Psychosocial Adjustment and Community Reintegration it does provide an important perspective into the long-term psychosocial consequences of child soldiering.

Loughry M. Investigating psychosocial adjustment of former child soldiers in Sierra Leone and Uganda. Journal of Refugee. Photo Gallery of Brent Stirton Photojournalist. ORANIA, NORTH WEST CAPE PROVINCE, SOUTH AFRICA: Niklas Kirsten, an Orania resident and former South African Army Paratrooper, teaches Erik Du Pree hand-gun self-defence in the fields outside Orania, South Africa.

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