The Six Grave Violations
Children are affected by armed conflict in many different ways. In order to advance the goal of protecting children during armed conflict and ending the impunity of perpetrators, the United Nations Security Council identified six categories of violations – the so-called six grave violations.
They serve as the basis to gather evidence on violations and include:
- Killing and maiming of children;
- Recruitment or use of children as soldiers;
- Sexual violence against children;
- Attacks against schools or hospitals;
- Denial of humanitarian access for children;
- Abduction of children.
Monitoring and reporting on the six violations
In 2005, the Security Council established a Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism (MRM) to systematically monitor, document and report on these heinous abuses in situations of concern around the world.
On the basis of this information, the United Nations Secretary-General names parties to conflict who recruit, kill or maim children, commit sexual violence, abduct children and attack schools and hospitals in his annual report for engagement with the goal of ending these violations. The Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict regularly reviews the country reports stemming from the MRM and makes recommendations on how to better protect children in specific country situations.
Basis for advocacy and dialogue with parties to conflict
Preventing and addressing these violations is the focus of the Special Representative’s advocacy, including during her country visits and when negotiating with parties to conflict.
For further information on the six grave violations, read our Working Paper “The Six Grave Violations against Children during Armed Conflict: The Legal Foundation“.