Switzerland's commitment in the area of children and armed conflict (CAAC) is a key area of concern for Switzerland. Switzerland's Foreign Policy Strategy 2020–23 pays particular attention to vulnerable groups, which is why the issue of children in armed conflict is a priority of Swiss humanitarian policy.

General Assembly Resolution A/RES/51/77 has led to the implementation of a monitoring and reporting mechanism to identify state and non-state parties committing serious violations of children's rights. CAAC is thus the only area of civilian protection where there is a robust accountability mechanism in place. Switzerland has been committed for years to ensuring that this mechanism remains effective and evidence-based and, to this end, actively supports the office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict. 

Grave violations of children's rights in armed conflict

Six grave violations affecting children in armed conflict have been identified:

  1. killing and maiming of children
  2. recruitment and use of children by armed forces and groups
  3. sexual violence against children
  4. attacks on schools and hospitals
  5. abduction of children
  6. denial of humanitarian access

The Security Council requires that the first five violations lead to a listing of parties that do not respect their obligations. The list is included as an annex to the annual report of the Special Representative, which describes global trends in the protection of children in armed conflict and is submitted annually to the Security Council. 

Last update 25.07.2023


Peace and Human Rights Division

Bundesgasse 32
3003 Bern


+41 58 462 30 50

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