Colombia is the Congo of the region, was the headline of an article by the country’s daily El Espectador today. The recruitment of child soldiers is increasing, according to the newspaper. Guerrillas as well as former and new paramilitaries recruit(ed) child soldiers. It is one of the worst crimes against humanity that exist. Children are forced to fight and murder and the girls are often used as sex slaves.
El Espectador interviewed a prosecutor of the International Criminal Court who thought it very possible that after the Congolese warlord Lubanga, Colombian warlords will be trialed for the recruitment of child soldiers.
In 2003 Human Rights Watch published a report about child soldiers called You’ll learn not to cry. According to this human rights organisation about 11.000 children and youngsters were fighting in one of the illegal groups in Colombia.
The subjet child soldiers is especially associated with Africa (Congo, Uganda, Sierra Leone), but in Colombia it is a big problem as well. The movie Blood Diamond offers a good impression about the seriousness of the phenomenon.