The United Nations General Assembly adopted the Optional protocol on the involvement of children in armed conflict to the Convention on the Rights of the Child in Annex I of a resolution (54/263) on 25 May 2000.
The protocol came into force on 12 February 2002.
The protocol requires that ratifying governments ensure that while their armed forces can accept volunteers below the age of 18, they can not be conscripted and "States Parties shall take all feasible measures to ensure that members of their armed forces who have not attained the age of 18 years do not take a direct part in hostilities". Non-state actors and guerrilla forces are forbidden from recruiting anyone under the age of 18 for any purpose. Currently, 142 states are party to the protocol and another 23 states have signed but not ratified it.
... In 1998, the coalition played a critical role during the conception of the Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict, an amendment to the ... The CRC is a United Nations treaty that dictates international standards for children's rights in political, social, and cultural areas, among others ... The Optional Protocol amendment called for signatories to ensure that members of their armed forces under 18 years of age were not compulsorily recruited nor ...
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