Child soldiers in South Sudan

According to the UN almost 16,000 children have been recruited by government and rebel forces since the civil war in South Sudan began

Photo by: AFP (Archive)
Photo by: AFP (Archive)

Children of War in South Sudan

Updated Dec 11, 2015

Recent UN reports say some 16,000 children have been recruited by government and rebel forces since the war in South Sudan began in December 2013. Most of them were abducted from their homes and sent to fight after their families and relatives were killed. Only about 10 percent percent of them have been released by the armed groups.

Inflamed ethnic tensions are largely the cause of the conflict in South Sudan. Initially the conflict began as a political struggle between President of South Sudan Salva Kiir and former Vice President Riek Machar, with the country's army split between the two sides.

"We have to fear for the worst, we have to fear that we will continue to see abuses and we will continue to see a really dangerous a really frgihtening rift between the two largest ethnic groups in South Sudan," said Skee Wheeler from Human Rights Watch.

Almost six million people - half of the country's population - are now in need of aid.

"The conflict is what brought me to this camp. we have been displaced from our homes, and our homes have been burned. we dont have houses now." a refugee named Nyakenrew from the camp said.