Abduction of children from northern Uganda

Commission on Human Rights resolution 1998/75


The Commission on Human Rights,

Recalling the principles set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, the Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others, the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,

Recalling also the findings and recommendations presented in the final report of the expert appointed by the Secretary­General on the impact of armed conflict on children (see A/51/306 and Add.1),

Recalling further the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action adopted by the World Conference on Human Rights in 1993 (A/CONF.157/23), which expressed concern about violations of human rights during armed conflicts affecting the civilian population, especially women, children, the elderly and the disabled,

Recalling the obligation of States parties to respect and strictly observe international humanitarian law in accordance with the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 for the protection of war victims, the Additional Protocols thereto of 1977 and other principles of international law,

Acknowledging the concern expressed in the concluding observations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC/C/15/Add.80) about the abduction, killing and torture of children, as well as the recruitment of children as child soldiers, in northern Uganda,

Recognizing the urgent need for the adoption of effective measures, nationally, regionally and internationally, to protect the civilian population, especially women and children, in northern Uganda from the effects of armed conflict,

Expressing profound concern at the continuing abduction, torture, detention, rape and forced recruitment of children from northern Uganda,

1. Takes note of the findings and recommendations contained in the reports issued in 1997 by United Nations bodies and organizations and non­governmental organizations on the abduction of children from northern Uganda;

2. Concurs with the comments of the Committee on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in the conflict in northern Uganda, in particular the recommendation on measures to stop the killing and abduction of children and the use of children as child soldiers;

3. Condemns in the strongest terms all parties involved in the abduction, torture, killing, rape, enslavement and forceful recruitment of children in northern Uganda, particularly the Lord's Resistance Army;

4. Demands the immediate cessation of all abductions and attacks on all civilian populations, in particular women and children, in northern Uganda by the Lord's Resistance Army;

5. Calls for the immediate and unconditional release and safe return of all abducted children currently held by the Lord's Resistance Army;

6. Requests the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture, established by the General Assembly by its resolution 36/151 of 16 December 1981, to provide assistance to the victims and their families suffering from the effects of torture inflicted by the Lord's Resistance Army;

7. Urges all Member States, international organizations, humanitarian bodies and all other concerned parties with any influence on the Lord's Resistance Army to exert all possible pressure on it to release, immediately and unconditionally, all children abducted from northern Uganda;

8. Demands that all parties external to the conflict in northern Uganda supporting, directly or indirectly, the continuing abduction and detention of children by the Lord's Resistance Army cease immediately all such assistance and collaboration;

9. Calls upon Member States to undertake to respect and ensure respect for the rules of international humanitarian law applicable to them in armed conflicts which are relevant to the child;

10. Requests the Special Representative of the Secretary­General on the impact of armed conflict on children, the United Nations Children's Fund, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and all relevant organizations, agencies and bodies of the United Nations system to address this situation as a matter of priority;

11. Requests the Secretary­General to report on the implementation of the present resolution to the Commission on Human Rights at its fifty­fifth session, through the Economic and Social Council, and to the General Assembly at its fifty­fourth session;

12. Decides to continue its consideration of this question at its fifty­fifth session under the same agenda item.

58th meeting
22 April 1998

[Adopted by a roll­call vote of 24 votes to 1, with 27 abstentions.
See chap. XX.]


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