Pakistan included in US list on child soldiers, may face strict sanctions

The US has added Pakistan and Turkey to its Child Soldiers Prevention Act (CSPA) list, a designation that could lead to strict sanctions on military assistance and listed countries’ participation in peacekeeping programs

Jul 02, 2021
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Child soldiers

The US has added Pakistan and Turkey to its Child Soldiers Prevention Act (CSPA) list, a designation that could lead to strict sanctions on military assistance and listed countries’ participation in peacekeeping programs.

The designation is included in the US State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report which ranks countries in various tiers based on their efforts for eliminating trafficking.

The US Child Soldiers Prevention Act requires publication in the annual TIP report of a list of foreign governments that have recruited or used child soldiers during the previous year (April 1, 2020, to March 31, 2021). The entities reviewed for this designation include armed forces, police, other security forces and government-supported armed groups, according to a report in Pakistan’s media outlet Dawn.

The 2021 CSPA list includes governments of the following countries: Afghanistan, Myanmar, Democratic Republic of Congo, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Nigeria, Pakistan, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria, Turkey, Venezuela and Yemen.

Six governments were identified on the first CSPA list in 2010.

The CSPA prohibits listed governments in the following US programs: International Military Education and Training, Foreign Military Financing, Excess Defence Articles, and Peacekeeping Operations. Some programs undertaken pursuant to the Peacekeeping Operations authority, are exempted.

The CSPA also prohibits the issuance of licenses for direct commercial sales of military equipment to such governments.

Beginning October 1, 2021, and effective throughout Fiscal Year 2022, these restrictions will apply to the listed countries, except those who receive a presidential waiver, applicable exception, or reinstatement of assistance under the terms of the CSPA.

(SAM)

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