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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Reinventing Peace: Challenges for a Young Continent
Author:MacIntyre, Angela
Periodical:African Security Review
Geographic term:Africa
youth policy
Labor and Employment
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Military, Defense and Arms
Politics and Government
External link:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10246029.2002.9627972
Abstract:The use of children in armed conflict has become a symbol of the apparent brutality of warfare in Africa. They have become a powerful tool for child rights advocates, who lobby for the protection of children through the provision of essential services such as health care, education and social services. But taking children and youth out of the broader security debate has turned the issue into a 'soft' humanitarian concern that rarely enters into discussions on African politics, militaries and economies. The danger in this lies in the fact that Africa is, demographically speaking, an extraordinarily young continent. The marginalization of youth from the security debate is paralleled by their absence from political and economic agendas. In war-affected nations in particular, the priority of social sectors plummets while governments attend to the business of the war economy, leaving health and education in the hands of humanitarian agencies. At the same time, children and youth, being the majority, represent manpower for both governments and armed forces. Thousands of children involved in combat in Africa are in fact a symptom of instability deeply exaggerated by demographics. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]