We must bring what is happening in Belarus to the world’s attention and hear from those on the ground. Briefers on #BYHumanRights: UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus, Anaïs Marin; Belarusian opposition presidential candidate Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya; Vice-Chairman of the Viasna Human Rights Center, Valiantsin Stefanovic; Legal Expert for the Belarusian Association of Journalists, Volha Siakhovich. The meeting is chaired by Urmas Reinsalu, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Estonia. The meeting was initiated by Estonia and co-sponsored by UN Security Council members the United States and United Kingdom, as well as Canada, Denmark, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, and Ukraine.

Press statement on the occasion of the 15th anniversary of the adoption of resolution 1612 (2005) on children and armed conflict

The Security Council held its annual open debate on children and armed conflict on 23 June 2020. The members of the Security Council condemned the scale and nature of all violations and abuses against children affected by armed conflict and expressed their concern over the impact of the Covid19 pandemic on the situation of these children.

The members of the Security Council welcomed the efforts of its Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict, established by resolution 1612 (2005) adopted fifteen years ago. They welcomed the Working Group’s contribution to the progress in preventing and responding to violations and abuses committed against children affected by armed conflict, including in the demobilization and reintegration of more than a hundred and fifty thousand children.

The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that quality education provided in a safe environment in conflict areas was essential in halting and preventing recruitment and re-recruitment of children contrary to the obligations of parties to conflict.

The members of the Security Council further welcomed the continued strengthening of the Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism also established by resolution 1612, and commended the role of UNICEF and other UN entities at the field level.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their call upon States and the United Nations to mainstream child protection into all relevant activities in conflict prevention, conflict and post-conflict situations with the aim of sustaining peace and preventing conflict.

The members of the Security Council reaffirmed their support for the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict in carrying out her mandate, in accordance with relevant Security Council resolutions. They reiterated their determination to ensure respect for and the implementation of its resolutions and presidential statements on children and armed conflict to date, as well as respect for other international obligations and commitments for the protection of children affected by armed conflict.”