Syria added to U.N. 'list of shame'

June 12, 2012 at 4:20 PM
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UNITED NATIONS, June 12 (UPI) -- Groups in Syria, Yemen and Sudan Tuesday were added to the United Nations' "list of shame" naming 52 parties guilty of "grave violations" against children.

The list, intended to shame those who "recruit and use children, kill and maim, commit sexual violence or attack schools and hospitals," shows a "mixed picture" for 2011, Radhika Coomaraswamy, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's special representative for Children and Armed Conflict, said in a release.

"While new crises erupted with a heavy toll on children such as in Syria, and also in Libya, violations against girls and boys have come to an end in other parts of the world," Coomaraswamy said.

Syrian children were among the 10,000 people killed, maimed, arbitrarily arrested, detained and tortured since the uprising against President Bashar Assad began more than one year ago, the release said. Schools have been raided and used as detention centers and military bases, and children have been used as human shields, the special representative's office said.

"The world is keeping a detailed account of the violence committed against civilians in Syria and I am confident that these crimes will not go unpunished," Coomaraswamy said.

Children also are increasingly being used as suicide bombers and "victim" bombers -- unknowingly carrying explosives that are detonated remotely.

"The world should unite against this inhuman and perverse practice of child suicide bombers," Coomaraswamy said.

On the positive side, parties to conflict in Nepal and Sri Lanka were de-listed after they successfully completed a U.N.-mandated program to halt the recruitment and use of children.

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