We have child soldiers in Britain too


The Independent

Letter to the editor

Letter to the editor

While in full support of The Independent’s Child Soldiers Appeal, I think we also need to look closer to home. The British armed forces do recruit children as young as 16.

The British Government itself made a submission under Article 8, paragraph 1, of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict, which states: “Army recruiting initiatives include presentations in schools by Army careers advisers, a variety of Army youth team and Army recruiting team activities, attachments and visits to units, school fairs, Combined Cadet Force, advertising and marketing initiatives, membership of the Army’s Camouflage Club.”

The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child in 2008 stated that the UK should “reconsider its active policy of recruitment of children into the armed forces”. We need to put pressure on our own Government to stop recruiting children here into the armed forces.

Arfon Rhys

Rhostryfan, Gwynedd

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