The Kurdish Volksbeschermingseenheden (YPG), the main Kurdish militia in Syria, the recruits in Syria displaced children from concentration camps. That complains the ngo Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Friday, which emphasises that the practices are contrary to international law.
Thousands of people live in the northeast of Syria in camps for displaced persons which are controlled by YPG, of the allies of the United States in the fight against terror group Islamic State (IS).
‘The most tragic is that the group of children recruited from vulnerable families without the knowledge of their parents, who do not even know where they are, ” says Priyanka Motaparthy of HRW.
The YPG were not immediately reachable for a comment.
International law prohibits non-governmental armed groups for fighters under the age of 18 years to recruit and the recruitment of children under the age of 15 is considered a war crime.
Eight families in three camps for displaced persons in the north of Syria, told HRW that Kurdish militiamen their children encouraged, to the ranks of the fighters to join. The youngest was a 13-year-old girl. “We are poor, they told my daughter that she can have her money and clothes could give”, says one mother, who for a month with no sign of life received from her daughter.
The Kurdish troops forced minors not to join them, but prevent families for their children to communicate. A practice that despair leads to the affected families, says Sara Kayyali, those who contributed to the HRW report. “They do not know where their children are, whether they are alive or dead, or that they are fighting in the front line,” she says.
Last year, the United Nations 224 cases of kindrekrutering by the YPG, which is five times more than in 2016. Also other armed groups in Syria made over the past seven years, guilty of the practice.