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First victims then perpetrators: child soldiers and International Law

Author(s): Claudia Morini

Journal: ACDI : Anuario Colombiano de Derecho Internacional
ISSN 2027-1131

Volume: 3;
Issue: Especial;
Start page: 187;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: Child soldiers | international criminal law | Sierra Leone.

This article examines the issue of the position of child soldiersunder International Law. After preliminary remarks on the approach ofinternational human rights and humanitarian law to the protection of children involved in armed conflicts, the article discusses the prohibitions on recruiting children and the individual criminal responsibility of recruiters.Case-law on the child soldiers’ recruitment is considered. In thefourth part the position of the child soldiers as perpetrators is discussed and the retributive approach to the issue is explored. The last section offers an overviewof the restorative justice-oriented solution to the dilemma of the criminal responsibility of child soldiers adopted in the context of the post-conflict situation in Sierra Leone.
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