[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index
Myanmar amongst worst users of chil
- Subject: Myanmar amongst worst users of chil
- From: darnott@xxxxxxxxxxx
- Date: Thu, 11 May 2000 12:14:00
Myanmar amongst worst users of child soldiers: report
AFP Bangkok 10 May 2000. Myanmar is amongst the most prolific users of
child soldiers, many of them battered and sexually abused, the first-ever
survey on the use of children in war released here Wednesday said.
According to the Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers, "Myanmar has
one of the highest
numbers of child soldiers in the world ... many of whom have been forced to
join" military groups.
"Orphans and street children are particularly vulnerable."
The Coalition -- made up of internationally renowned non-governmental
organizations -- defines child
soldiers as under the age of eighteen.
The Coalition slammed not only Myanmar's military regime but also ethnic
rebel groups fighting the
Yangon junta, including the Karen National Union and God's Army for
God's Army gained international fame in January 2000 when a number of its
members, who claim to
follow 12-year-old twins Johnny and Luther Htoo, who they believe have
magical powers, seized a
hospital in western Thailand.
A UN report in March on human rights in Myanmar condemned the country for
massive violations of
human rights and the large-scale displacement of some ethnic groups in 1999.
The UN estimated that about one million children in Myanmar suffer from
malnutrition, and there is an
increasing use of heroin and an alarming spread of HIV/AIDS.