An open letter to the Ministry of Defence from national children’s organisations and rights groups calls on them to stop recruiting 16 and 17 year olds into the armed forces. The letter has been made public on the same day that the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child begins its periodic examination of the UK’s record on child rights. In 2008, the UN urged the UK to raise the enlistment age to 18.
The armed forces should stop recruiting children under the age of 18, according to an open letter to the Ministry of Defence from national children’s organisations and rights groups.
The children’s rights alliances for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales are among the signatories of an open letter to the Ministry of Defence, calling for an immediate end to the recruitment of under-18s. The signatories, which also include the Children’s Commissioners for Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, call on the MoD to raise the recruitment age in line with the recommendations of the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child. (The Children’s Commissioner for England has previously indicated her support for this issue). The letter points out that the UK is the only country in Europe to allow enlistment from age 16 – most countries worldwide now only allow adults from age 18 to join military forces, recognising that enlistment at younger ages is not appropriate in modern armed forces.… Read more