The Afghan National Police (ANP), including the Afghan Local Police (ALP), are listed in the annexes of the Secretary-General’s (SG) 2020 annual report (S/2020/525) on children and armed conflict (CAAC) for recruitment and use. Four armed groups are each listed for at least two grave violations. In March, the SG is expected to report on UNAMA, pursuant to SCR 2543 (2020). According to the SG’s December periodic report (S/2020/1182), the Country Task Force on Monitoring and Reporting (CTFMR) verified 954 grave violations against children in the third quarter of 2020, including 773 child casualties, 119 children recruited and used, and 15 abductions. The CTFMR also documented a fourfold increase in attacks on schools as compared to the previous quarter. Children comprised 30 percent of all civilians casualties in Afghanistan in 2020 and accounted for 80 percent of civilian casualties due to explosive remnants of war (ERW). The Security Council should:

  • Call on all parties to uphold their obligations under international humanitarian law (IHL) and human rights law (IHRL), to take all feasible precautions to avoid – and in any event to minimize – harm to civilians, including children, and to facilitate safe and unimpeded delivery of humanitarian assistance;
  • Call on all parties to immediately cease attacks or threats against schools, hospitals, and their personnel; and urge the Government to systematically prevent military use of schools and to ensure that attacks on these institutions and their personnel are investigated and those responsible duly prosecuted;
  • Call upon the Government to prioritize accountability for perpetrators of grave violations, and urge Parliament to adopt the Law on Protection of Child Rights (Child Act);
  • Urge the Government to fully implement its 2011 action plan and 2014 roadmap to compliance to end and prevent child recruitment and use by its security forces and to adopt a standardized referral system for the reintegration of children separated from parties to conflict, rejected from recruitment centers, or released from detention, including those detained for alleged or actual association with armed groups designated as “terrorist”;
  • Call for the protection, rights, well-being, and empowerment of children to be fully incorporated and prioritized in ongoing and future efforts to build and sustain peace, drawing on the Practical Guidance for Mediators; and encourage and facilitate consideration of children’s views in these processes where possible and compatible with the child’s best interests.

Estonia and Norway are the lead countries on Afghanistan.

This information is based on Watchlist’s Children and Armed Conflict Monthly Update – March 2021.


UN Action

Year listed: 2003
Action Plans signed: Afghan National Police (including the Afghan Local Police) – recruitment and use of children and sexual violence against children (January 2011)
Sanctions Committee: 1988 Sanctions Committee and 1267 ISIL and Al-Qaeda Sanctions Committee (Current Chair: Indonesia)
Secretary-General’s reports on CAAC in Afghanistan: 2019; 2015; 20112008
Security Council Working Group conclusions on Afghanistan: 2020; 2016; 20112009
UN Mission: UNAMA

Perpetrators listed in the annexes of the Secretary-General’s annual reports on children and armed conflict

2001 2002 2003 2005 2006 2007 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Afghan National Police (including Afghan Local Police)~* a a a a a a a a
Factions associated with the former Northern Alliance a
Factions in the south of Afghanistan a
Factional fighting groups a
Haqqani network* a a,b a,b a,b a,b a,b a,b a,b
Hezb-e-Islami of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar* a,b,c a,b a,b a,b a,b a,b a,b
Hezb-i-Islami a
Jama’at al-Da’wah ila al-Qur’an wal-Sunnah* a a a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d,e a,b,d,e
Taliban forces/remnants of the Taliban* a a, b, d a,b,d,f a a,b a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d,e a,b,d,e
Tora Bora Front* a a a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d,e a,b,d,e
Latif Mansur Network* a a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d a,b,d,e a,b,d,e
ISIL – Khorasan Province a,b

a: Parties that recruit and use children
b: Parties that kill and maim children
c: Parties that commit rape and other forms of sexual violence against children

d: Parties that engage in attacks on schools and/or hospitals
e: Parties that engage in abduction of children
f: Parties that deny humanitarian access to children

~ This party has concluded an action plan with the United Nations in line with Security Council resolutions 1539 (2004) and 1612 (2005).
* This party has been in the annexes for at least five years and is therefore considered a persistent perpetrator.