March 2021 – In 2020 the UN reported the highest-ever number of verified grave violations against children, with more than 26,000 incidents verified in the previous year. Children continue to bear the brunt of armed conflicts across the world, notably where the denial of humanitarian access is most acute.

In light of this, the members of the Human Rights Council should clearly prioritize the investigation, documentation and reporting of violations and crimes affecting children in accountability mechanism mandates and resolutions, including by encouraging the adoption of deliberate strategies, policies, and operational guidance supported with dedicated child rights capacity.

In a joint statement to the Human Rights Council, seven international civil society organizations, including Watchlist, highlight grave violations perpetrated against children in armed conflict, call for restored credibility of the list of perpetrators in the Secretary-General’s annual report on children and armed conflict, and express deep concern with the impact of policies to counter terrorism on children’s rights in armed conflict.

Read the joint statement here.