Three armed groups are listed in the annexes of the SG’s 2021 annual report on CAAC for recruiting and using children. Of these, Ansar Eddine and Mouvement national de libération de l’Azawad are also listed for rape and other forms of sexual violence. In December, the SG is expected to report on the implementation of MINUSMA’s mandate, pursuant to SCR 2584 (2021), which is the first Security Council resolution to mention the Safe Schools Declaration. According to the SG’s October report (S/2021/844), the number of documented grave violations against children increased from 172 in the previous reporting period to 228 violations, including 55 children (37 boys, 12 girls, 6 unknown sex) killed or maimed, 82 children (74 boys, 8 girls) recruited and used, and two cases of rape or other sexual violence against children. Insecurity has consistently led to an increasing number of school closures in 2021, with 1,595 schools closed in June, affecting some 478,500 students. In August, the Platform signed action plans to end and prevent child recruitment and use, as well as other grave violations. The Security Council should:

  • Urge the transitional Government to strengthen the legal framework on child protection and reinforce efforts to hold perpetrators of grave violations accountable, including by finalizing the revision of the Child Protection Code and conducting timely and impartial investigations and prosecutions; ensure provision of comprehensive, gender-sensitive, and age-appropriate response for child survivors;
  • Call on all transitional Government and international actors to ensure that counterterrorism operations fully uphold obligations under IHL and IHRL, and call for continued and full implementation of the 2013 handover protocol, including for children allegedly associated with armed groups designated as terrorist, treating children primarily as victims, prioritizing their reintegration, as guided by the Paris Principles;
  • Call on all parties to immediately cease attacks on schools and education personnel and urge the Government to continue to uphold its commitments under the Safe Schools Declaration; encourage the Coordination des mouvements de l’Azawad and the Platform to swiftly and fully implement their respective action plans;
  • Call on all parties to swiftly and fully implement the recommendations of the SCWG-CAAC elaborated in its third conclusions on children and armed conflict in Mali.

France is the lead country on Mali. Mexico chairs the 2374 Sanctions Committee.

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


UN Action

Year listed: 2013
Action Plans signed: CMA (Coordination des mouvements de l’Azawad), including the MNLA (Mouvement national de libération de l’Azawad), action plan to end and prevent the recruitment and use of children and sexual violence against children (March 2017)
Sanctions Committee: Mali Sanctions Committee (Current Chair: Dominican Republic)
Secretary-General’s reports on CAAC in Mali: 2018; 2014
Security Council Working Group conclusions on Mali: 2020; 20182014

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
Ansar Eddine* a,c a,c a,c a,c a,c
Mouvement national de libération de l’Azawad~* a,c a,c a,c a,c a,c
Mouvement pour l’unification et le jihad en Afrique de l’Ouest * a,c a,c a,c a,c a,c

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.