Nigeria group releases more than 800 child soldiers

Nigeria’s Civilian Joint Task Force has released 833 child soldiers, and has agreed with United Nations demands to stop recruiting children into its fight against Boko Haram.

Founded in 2013, CJTF is an association of vigilante groups.

The UN estimates there had been 1,175 boys and 294 girls fighting or working for CJTF in the capital of Nigeria’s northern Borno state, which is the birthplace of Boko Haram.

More than 2,000 children could still be working with the organization overall.

An estimated 40 percent of the CJTF are children under 15, with some soldiers as young as 11, according to UNICEF.

Children in CJTF are involved in night patrols, crowd control, checkpoints and intelligence efforts.

More than 2,000 other children are believed to be in other armed groups fighting Boko Haram.

Boko Haram also abducts children and uses them as suicide bombers.

Sources: Punch (Nigeria), Deutsche Welle

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