Despite increased publicity on the use of child soldiers in the Democratic Republic of Congo, recruitment is increasing once again. Aid agencies report that “in the past few months, fighting between the DRC army and Rwandan Hutu rebels and other militias has intensified, deepening the crisis for the country’s youth.” They describe the “situation as ‘catastrophic'”.
Increasingly brutal techniques are being employed to force the children to fight and kill. According to reporter Mohammed Adow from Al Jazeera, children “are trained to kill almost as soon as they are recruited” and are being forced “to kill a member of his own family” as part of their training.
According to Human Rights Watch the Congolese army (FARDC), the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda, the National Congress for the Defense of the People, pro-government Mai Mai groups, and the Lord’s Resistance Army are all parties in the DRC conflict known to use child soldiers.
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