This past week the United States released the Trafficking in Persons report, a diplomatic tool ranking countries worldwide on what they are doing to prevent human trafficking and a way to engage them in a discussion about ways to reduce this crime. Jesses Eaves, Senior Policy Adviser for Child Protection at World Vision US, talks about the report on CNN. In 2008, the The Child Soldier Prevention Act required the report to include the use of child soldiers in the ranking of countries as well. For the first time since 2009 when this information was first included, the number of countries using child soldiers has gone up.
“The 10 countries (in the report) are Central African Republic (CAR), Chad, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Myanmar, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. Of those ten countries, the U.S. government gives military aid to seven of them: Chad, DRC, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Yemen, and now the Syrian opposition. That means U.S. taxpayer dollars are being spent on armies that use children.”