The Ejército de Liberación Nacional (ELN) is listed in the SG’s annual report on children and armed conflict for recruitment and use. In July the Council will receive the SG’s latest progress report on the UN Verification Mission in Colombia, pursuant to SCR 2366 (2017). The SG’s previous report (S/2018/279, paras. 68-69) described challenges in the reintegration of children formally released from FARC-EP ranks, as well as a lack of specialized attention and adequate facilities for children of former FARC-EP members living in the territorial areas. The report also highlighted early warnings from the Office of the Ombudsperson, signaling risks of child recruitment and sexual violence in several regions. Council Members should:

  • Request an update from the SG on implementation of the Government-led reintegration program for children formerly associated with the FARC-EP, with particular focus on the integration of gender and ethnic/cultural perspectives, as well as on steps taken to address the specialized needs of children currently in the demobilization process who will turn 18 by the end of the year and transition to the adult program, as well as children demobilized outside of formal processes;
  • Welcoming resumed dialogue between the Government and the ELN, urge all parties to prioritize the protection of children in the early stages of the peace process and to address the protection of children as a confidence-building measure; and to that end, urge the ELN to immediately release all persons under 18 from its ranks and end all child recruitment and use and abductions;
  • Remind all parties that children should be considered primarily as victims, entitled to the full protection of their rights, including effective rehabilitation and reintegration into their communities and restorative justice processes, in accordance with their best interest;
  • Invite the Government to keep the SCWG-CAAC informed of its efforts to implement the recommendations of the Working Group and the SG, as appropriate.

The United Kingdom is the lead country on Colombia.

This information is based on Watchlist’s Children and Armed Conflict Monthly Update: July 2018.


Since 2003, Watchlist has partnered with the Coalition against the Involvement of Boys, Girls, and Youth in the Armed Conflict in Colombia (COALICO), including through joint advocacy, trainings, and support for COALICO’s work on monitoring and reporting on child rights violations. A national civil society platform established in 1999 to promote and protect the rights of boys and girls affected by the armed conflict, COALICO coordinates the Observatory on Children and Armed Conflict that monitors and reports on grave violations against children in Colombia. It also participates as a permanent member of the UN-led Country Task Force on Monitoring and Reporting (CTFMR).


UN Action

Year listed: 2003
Action Plans signed: No
Sanctions Committee: No
Secretary-General’s reports on CAAC in Colombia: 201620122009
Security Council Working Group conclusions on Colombia: 20172012; 2010
UN Mission: UN Mission in Colombia

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
Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia (AUC) a a
Autodefensas Unidas del Sur del Casanare (AUSC) a a a a
Autodefensas Campesinas de Cordoba y Uraba (ACCU) a a
Autodefensas de Magdalena Medio (ACMM) a a
Autodefensas del Meta (AM) a a
Autodefensas Campesinas del Sur del Cesar (ACSC) a
Autodefensas del Puerto Boyaca (APB) a
Autodefensas de Cundinamarca (AC) a
Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia – Bloque Centauros a
Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia – Bloque Norte a
Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia – Bloque Mineros a
Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia – Bloque Pacifico a
Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) a a
Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia-Ejército del Pueblo (FARC-EP)* a,c,e a,b,c,e,f a,b,c,d,e a a a a a a a a
Ejército de Liberación Nacional (ELN)* a a a,c,e a,b,c,e,f a,b,c,d a a a a a a a a
Frente Cacique Pipinta a,b,c,e a

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.