US Adds Pakistani Government to Child Military Recruitment List

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The term "child soldier" means any person under 18 who is directly involved in the war or who has been forcibly recruited by the government, police, or other security forces.

According to the State Department, the governments identified on this list are subject to limitations.

Washington / Islamabad: The US has added Pakistan and 14 other countries to the Child Soldiers Prevention Act, listing foreign governments with government-backed groups recruiting or using child soldiers. This term could lead to a ban on certain security services and a license to trade military equipment.
 

The US Child Soldiers Prevention Act (CSPA) requires the publication of an annual report on Trafficking in Persons (TIP), a list of foreign governments that have recruited or deployed child soldiers in the past year (April 1, 2020, to March 31, 2021).
 

Countries listed on the US State Department's annual TIP list are Pakistan, Turkey, Afghanistan, Myanmar, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen.
 

According to the State Department, the governments identified on the list are subject to limitations for the next financial year, certain security measures, and the commercial licensing of military equipment.
 

The term "child soldier" means any person under 18 who is directly involved in the war or who has been forcibly recruited by the government, police, or other security forces.
 

It also means any person under the age of 15 who is voluntarily enlisted in the armed forces, the police, or other security forces or any other person beneath the age of 18 who has been obtained or used in the military by different soldiers in the national army.
 

It includes any such person serving in any capacity, including a supportive role, such as "cook, treasurer, courier, medicine, security guard or sex slave."
 

The CSPA prohibits government services listed under the following jurisdiction: International Military Education and Training, Foreign Army Funding, Additional Defense Documents, and Peacekeeping Services, in addition to other programs under the auspices of the Peacekeeping Authority.
 

It also prevents the issuance of permits for the direct sale of military equipment to such governments.
Effective October 1, 2021, and in full force for the 2022 financial year, these restrictions will apply to the listed countries, which are not subject to presidential withdrawal, non-operation, or refund assistance following CSPA principles.

 

The willingness to place the government on the CSPA list is informed by various sources, including personal experience by US government officials and research and credible reporting from various UN agencies, international organizations, local and international NGOs, and foreign media.

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