Wednesday December 13, 2017

UN Special Representative for Children Refuted Government Claims of Releasing Kidnapped Children in Malakal

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NAIROBI – No children have been released in South Sudan following reports of child soldier recruitment, the UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict said in a statement.

“No children have been released from the SPLA (Sudan People’s Liberation Army) or Riek Machar’s opposition. Instead, we are receiving reports of hundreds of new recruitments of child soldiers by militias and groups aligned with the Government or the SPLA in Opposition,” Leila Zerrougui said Tuesday.

Last month, UNICEF stated that an armed group kidnapped 89 boys older than 12 in South Sudan.

The latest wave of violence that claimed thousands of lives in South Sudan dates back to December 2013, when President Salva Kiir accused opposition leader Riek Machar of plotting a coup.

In January, almost 300 child soldiers were released from the South Sudan rebel group led by David Yau Yau. Following the release, Zerrougui stated that thousands of children are still participating in military conflict.

THE UPPER NILE TIMES

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