Role of the Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict

The Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict was established in July 2005 pursuant to Security Council resolution 1612 and is currently chaired by Luxembourg.

Responsibilities of the Working Group

Consisting of the 15 Security Council members, the Working Group meets in closed sessions to review reports on children in armed conflict in specific country-situations, progress made in the implementation of action plans to end violations against children, and other relevant information.

Subsequent to these reports, the Working Group makes recommendations to parties to conflict, Governments and donors, as well as United Nations actors on measures to promote the protection of war-affected children.

Keeping the pressure

Discernible progress has been observed as a result of the recommendations of the Working Group, including drawing the attention of the Security Council as well as its sanctions committees to specific issues. For instance, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, after an initial delay, the Government brought to trial former Mai-Mai Commander Kyungu Mutanga for war crimes and crimes against humanity, including the recruitment of 300 children in Katanga Province from 2003 to 2006. This action follows strong recommendations by the Working Group to take appropriate legal measures against members of armed groups accused of grave crimes against children.

Toolkit of the Working Group

In addition to specific recommendations to the Security Council, the Working Group also has other tools at its disposal to address child protection concerns including the possibility of members of the Working Group to undertake a field trip, to hold emergency meetings and/or to issue a media statement.