Four non-State armed actors are listed for child rights violations in Sudan, three of whom have signed action plans with the UN to end and prevent grave violations. In August, the Security Council is expected to receive an oral update from the Secretary-General (SG) on the situation in Sudan, pursuant to SCR 2479 (2019). The resolution also extended the period for UNAMID’s withdrawal in light of the ouster of former president Omar al-Bashir in April and the subsequent takeover by the Transitional Military Council (TMC). Since December 2018, Government security forces have violently cracked down on civilian protesters, including children. In June alone, Government forces killed over 130 protesters, including at least 19 children, and injured at least 49 children. According to UNICEF, others have been detained, recruited to join the fighting, and sexually abused. Most recently, on July 29, Rapid Support Forces (RSF) shot and killed at least five teenage children at a protest in El-Obeid, the capital of North Kordofan State. Schools, hospitals, and health centers have also been targeted, looted, and destroyed. Human rights groups have rejected the findings of a TMC-backed investigation into crackdowns on protesters in Khartoum, saying that TMC figures are significantly lower than the death toll statistics documented by local civil society and fail to address credible allegations of sexual violence against protesters by security forces. The situation in Darfur and other conflict-affected regions also remains dire, with continuing attacks on civilians by Government forces, intercommunal violence, and Sudan Liberation Army/Abdul Wahid (SLA/AW) inter-factional fighting in the Jebel Marra area. Thousands of civilians living in rebel-controlled areas continue to face challenges accessing humanitarian aid, as well as attacks by SLA/AW factions and Sudanese Armed Forces, leading to displacements. SLA/AW factions have reportedly perpetrated sexual violence against children, abductions and recruitment of children, and attacks on schools and hospitals.

The Security Council should:

  • Unequivocally condemn all human rights violations by State security forces, including the excessive use of force, sexual violence, and unlawful detention of protesters, including children, as well as abuses by non-State armed actors in Jebel Marra;
  • Call upon Government authorities to allow humanitarian organizations to respond to those in need, including through access to hospitals that have been off-limits or closed;
  • Urge authorities to allow unhindered access to all areas of Sudan for UN and other independent international monitors;
  • Call for an impartial, independent investigation into the attacks on protesters, including cases of sexual and gender-based violence by militias and other armed groups, and for those responsible to be held accountable;
  • Expand targeted sanctions in Sudan, now only focused on Darfur, to individuals responsible for violence against protesters and other peaceful opposition, including children;
  • Carefully consider ongoing issues relating to the protection of civilians, including child protection concerns, in the context of discussions on UNAMID’s drawdown, and ensure a meaningful presence of child protection experts with adequate staffing and resources in Darfur, in order to safeguard the continuity of the UN’s Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism (MRM).

The United Kingdom is the lead country on Darfur. Poland chairs the 1591 Sudan Sanctions Committee.

This information is based on Watchlist’s Children and Armed Conflict Monthly Update: August 2019.


UNISFA’s current mandate will expire on November 15, 2019, pursuant to Security Council Resolution 2469 (2019). In his latest report, the Secretary-General (SG) notes the mission’s continued engagement with communities on human rights and international standards, emphasizing protection of women and children (S/2019/817, paras. 19, 23). During the previous reporting period, a civilian Women and Child Protection Advisor was deployed to Abyei; however, the report included no specific information on children and armed conflict. On July 16, a group of unknown men attacked UNISFA peacekeepers at Amiet market, resulting in several casualties including an eight-month-old child. The Security Council should:

  • Welcome the Women and Child Protection Advisor’s deployment, ensure adequate child protection capacity within UNISFA, and request an update on the situation of children affected by armed conflict in Abyei;
  • Urge parties to respect international human rights and international humanitarian law, and to take measures to protect civilians, especially children;
  • Request the SG to include children and armed conflict as a specific aspect of future progress reports on UNISFA, disaggregating data on the six grave violations, and signaling priority concerns to guide Council action on Abyei.

The United States is the lead country on Sudan/South Sudan.

This information is based on Watchlist’s Children and Armed Conflict Monthly Update: November 2019.


UN Action

Year listed: 2003
Action Plans signed: SPLM-North – recruitment and use of children (November 2016); Sudanese Government – recruitment and use of children (March 2016); SPLA – recruitment and use of children (November 2009); SLA/Minnawi – recruitment and use of children (June 2007)
JEM – submitted an action plan to the UN on recruitment and use of children (September 2012)
Sanctions Committee: Sudan Sanctions Committee
Secretary-General’s reports on CAAC in Sudan: 2017; 2011200920072006
Security Council Working Group conclusions on Sudan: 2017; 2012200920082006

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
Government-allied militia, the South Sudan Unity Movement (SSUM) a a
Government-supported militias (backed by Government of Sudan) a,b,c,d
Pro-Government militias* a a a a a a a a
Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A) a a
Sudan People’s Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N) *~ a a a a a a
Sudan Liberation Movement/Army (SLM/A) a
Sudan Liberation Army (SLM/A) (Minawi) a,b,c,e
Sudan Liberation Army (SLA)/Minni Minawi* a,b,c a,b a a a a a a a a
Sudan Liberation Army (SLA)/Peace Wing a a a a
Janjaweed a,b,c,e a,b,c,e a,b,c,d,f
Justice and Equality Movement (JEM)*~ a a,b,d a a a a a a a a
Justice and Equality Movement (Peace Wing) a,b,c a a a a
Police forces (camel police) a
Police forces, including the Central Reserve Police & Border Intelligence Forces* a,b,c a,b,c a a a a a a
Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) a,b,e,f a,b,c,d,f a,b,c,d a
Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) a,b a,c a a a
Joint Integrated Units of the Sudan Armed Forces and SPLA a
The White Army (Lou Nuer) a,b
Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) a a a,b,c a,b,c
Chadian opposition forces a a,b,c a,b a a
Popular Defense Forces (PDF)*~ a,b,c a a a a a a a
Sudan Liberation Army (SLA)/Abu Gasim/Mother Wing a,b,c a a a a a
Sudan Liberation Army (SLA)/Free Will a,b,c a a a a
Sudan Liberation Army (SLA)/Abdul Wahid* a,e a a a a a a a a a
Sudan Liberation Army (SLA)/Shafi a,e
Sudan Liberation Army (SLA)/Unity a a a a a
Sudan Liberation Army (SLA)/Historical Leadership a a a
Movement of Popular Force for Rights and Democracy a a a
Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF)*~ (including Sudan Police Forces) a,c a,c a a a a a a a
South Sudan Defence Forces, including the forces of Major-General Gabriel Tang Ginyi a,b,c
Pibor Defence Forces a,b,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.