Burkina Faso


In his 2022 annual report on children and armed conflict (CAAC), the Secretary-General (SG) newly listed Jama‘a Nusrat ul-Islam wa al-Muslimin (JNIM) in the annexes for recruitment and use, killing and maiming, and abduction of children in Burkina Faso. In 2021, the UN verified the killing and maiming of 227 children (91 boys, 92 girls, 44 of unknown sex), 68 cases of recruitment and use (62 boys, 6 girls), nine cases of rape and other forms of sexual violence (all girls), 85 attacks on schools and hospitals, 250 abductions (88 boys, 159 girls, 3 of unknown sex), and 17 incidents of denial of humanitarian access. Of those children recruited and used, most were used as combatants, and some were as young as six years old. A total of 18 boys were detained in a high security prison for their alleged association with armed groups, including three who have been in detention since 2018. Among those children who were abducted, 238 were subsequently released. The Government of Burkina Faso has previously developed a handover protocol with the UN for the transfer of children allegedly associated with armed groups to civilian child protection actors, which is awaiting final endorsement. Insecurity has further deteriorated since the January 2022 military coup, with armed groups reportedly carrying out mass killings, rapes, and child recruitment, and government security forces and militias engaged in counterterrorism operations suspected of violations against civilians. The Security Council should:

  • Demand that all parties uphold their obligations under international humanitarian law (IHL) and human rights law (IHRL), allow and facilitate safe, timely, and unimpeded humanitarian access, and engage with the UN to end and prevent grave violations against children; and urge accountability for all perpetrators;
  • Remind all parties that children affected by armed conflict should be treated primarily as victims, including those allegedly associated with armed groups designated as terrorist by the UN; their reintegration should be prioritized in line with international juvenile justice standards, and detention should only be used as a last resort and for the shortest appropriate time; call for the release of children detained for their alleged association with armed groups, and for the swift endorsement and full implementation of the handover protocol jointly developed with the UN;
  • Call for the full implementation of Burkina Faso’s commitments under the Paris Principles and Commitments, the Safe Schools Declaration, and the Vancouver Principles;
  • Demand that all parties immediately cease attacks or threats against schools, hospitals, and related protected persons, in line with SCR 2601 (2021).

This information is based on Watchlist’s Children and Armed Conflict Monthly Update – August 2022


UN Action

Year listed: 2022
Action Plans Signed: N/A
Sanctions Committee: N/A
Secretary-General’s reports on CAAC in Burkina Faso: N/A
Security Council Working Group conclusions on Burkina FasoN/A
UN Mission: N/A