New York, 12 July 2011 – During the annual Security Council Open Debate on Children and Armed Conflict, the Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution expanding the criteria for listing parties to conflict in the Secretary-General’s annual report. The criteria now include parties who attack schools and hospitals.
Additionally, the Security Council, under the German presidency, firmly reiterates its readiness to impose targeted measures against those who persistently violate children’s rights in conflict.
“The promise of this resolution is very real. During my visits to conflict areas, I have personally seen the devastation–schools completely destroyed, bombed or burnt to the ground. Attacks on hospitals are two-fold atrocities. Not only do they kill and wound girls and boys, but they leave children without access to treatment,” said the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict Radhika Coomaraswamy in the Security Council on Tuesday.
“Today’s resolution takes us one step further. It not only emphasizes that schools and hospitals should be zones of peace respected by all parties to conflict, it adds attacks on schools and hospitals as listing criteria in my annual reports on children in armed conflict,” said Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
Prior to this resolution, the Secretary-General’s annual list included parties who recruit or use children, kill and/or maim children, or commit sexual violence.
In the last two years, the SPLA, the MILF, the ANT in Chad, the UNPN-M in Nepal, and the Afghan National Security Forces have all signed Action Plans with the United Nations which is the first step towards de-listing from the Secretary-General’s annual report.
Follow the open debate live starting at 10am EST July 12: http://www.un.org/webcast and on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/childreninwar