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South Sudan: More than 300 child soldiers released

South Sudan: More than 300 child soldiers released
From Al Jazeera - February 7, 2018

More than 300 child soldiers have been released from armed groups in South Sudan, the United Nations has announced.

The 311 children, including 87 girls, will now begin reintegrating into their communities, the UN mission in the country (UNMISS) said in a statement on Wednesday.

"Children should not be carrying guns and killing each other," said David Shearer, head of UNMISS.

"They should be playing, learning, having fun with friends, protected and cherished by the adults around them."

The children's release was marked at a ceremony in the city of Yambio.

Shearer said this was the first time that "so many young women" had been involved in a release like this in the war-torn country.

"They will have endured suffering, including sexual abuse. It is vital that they receive the support they need to rejoin their communities and that they are welcomed home by family and friends without any sense of stigma."

Ruinous conflict

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