US-backed Syria coalition denies using child soldiers
Human Rights Watch report alleges that recruiters have targeted refugee camps
A Kurdish-Arab coalition in Syria has denied recruiting children from displacement camps in the Middle East country’s northeast, AFP reported.
Thousands of people dwell in camps across parts of Syria controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces, a US-backed coalition fighting ISIS.
The Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), considered the backbone of the SDF, has recruited child soldiers in the past, according to the United Nations, Human Rights Watch and other rights groups.
In a report published on Friday, Human Rights Watch accused the YPG of recruiting children as fighters.
The SDF’s political branch, the Syrian Democratic Council, pledged to investigate “individual” cases and hold those responsible for child recruitment accountable.
“We are against the recruitment of children under any pretext,” said the Syrian Democratic Council.