PROTECTION OF CHILDREN’S IN ARMED CONFLICT: INTERNATIONAL PERSPECTIVE
Shivendra Nath Mishra, 1st Year, Chanakya National Law University, Patna
The protection of children in armed conflicts is an important concern of international and human rights policy. Children and young people under the age of 18 require special protection and may not be used in armed conflicts under any circumstances. The international community endeavours to continuously strengthen the international system for protecting children in armed conflicts. The Indian government is particularly involved in this field and has ratified some international agreements.
Recently an incident took place in the US, a former student at school opened fire and killed 17 other students. It is just catastrophic.
According to a report published by Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO), In 2019 almost 2/3rd of the world's children were living in a conflict-ridden nation. Approx 426 Million Children were living less than 50km from where the actual fighting took place.
THE INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW AGREEMENTS
International humanitarian law is a special law for situations of armed conflict that aims to reduce human suffering during the war. According to the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 and the First and Second Additional Protocols of 1977, it protects children under 15 years of age as civilians in international and non-international armed conflicts. It prohibits recruitment and participation in combat operations. If they take part in combat operations, they enjoy special protection as children.
THE UN CONVENTION ON THE RIGHTS OF THE CHILD AND ITS OPTIONAL PROTOCOLS
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and its additional protocols is the central reference work that defines the protection, funding, and participation rights of children and young people up to the age of 18. With ratification, 193 states committed themselves to protect children in armed conflicts and to ensure that people under the age of 15 are neither recruited for the armed forces nor directly take part in combat operations.
In 2000, the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child was supplemented by a first additional protocol on the participation of children in armed conflicts