29 March 2021 Jakarta, Indonesia – The European Union (EU) in cooperation with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and its Global Programme to End Violence Against Children, has launched a new STRIVE action, STRIVE Juvenile: Preventing and Responding to Violence against Children by Terrorist and Violent Extremist Groups. Today, the Government of Indonesia officially joined the STRIVE Juvenile Partnership and will cooperate with UNODC within the next three years to prevent and counter violent extremism affecting children, in full respect of human rights, gender equality and international law.
Child recruitment and exploitation is a global phenomenon, and especially so in recent years, as terrorist and violent extremist groups’ capacities to target children have reached far beyond countries affected by armed conflict. But it also presents considerable regional, national, and even local variations. In line with the four pillars of the new EU’s Countering Terrorism Agenda: Anticipate, Prevent, Protect, and Respond, STRIVE Juvenile will aim at disrupting terrorist groups’ recruitment of children and promoting the rehabilitation and reintegration of children who have been associated with these groups.
“The EU is committed to fighting violence against children and to promoting child friendly justice”, highlighted Mr. Marc Vierstraete-Verlinde, Counter Terrorism Expert SEA. “Today, we are here to mark the beginning of a new and very important project, STRIVE Juvenile, because it puts these crucial objectives first (...) and recognizes that children can be extremely vulnerable to terrorist tactics, but they also have the power to transform societal dynamics. Investing in children and promoting their rehabilitation and reintegration means actively preventing violent extremism and building peaceful societies.”
Since 2015, UNODC has been addressing specific efforts to increase the protection of children from terrorism and violent extremism. One of the key tools of the Office, the UNODC Roadmap on the treatment of these children, provides a platform for national counterparts to turn guidance into action at national level. UNODC already engaged with Indonesian counterparts in the context of multiple regional activities. In Bali in March 2020, the Government of Indonesia launched the Bali Call for Action, a political declaration which endorses the UNODC Roadmap and commits to translating it into action at the national level. Within the STRIVE Juvenile Indonesia, UNODC will build on its expertise to implement innovative and demand-driven interventions focusing on two specific objectives: improving government strategies, policies and mechanisms related to child recruitment and exploitation by terrorist groups and increasing resilience of vulnerable children against terrorist groups agendas.
Mr. Collie Brown, UNODC Representative of the UNODC Programme Office for Indonesia, congratulated “the Government of Indonesia for the leadership and the ongoing commitment to ensuring protection of children associated with terrorist groups (...).” He also reiterated the fact that “UNODC is very pleased that our partnership with the Government of Indonesia, and in particular the National Counter Terrorism Agency, allows to support the important efforts the address this very complex and urgent area of work.”
Demonstrating strong political will in dealing with the phenomenon of child recruitment and exploitation by terrorist and violent extremist groups, the Government of Indonesia has played a leading role in the ASEAN region and globally by advocating for supporting the rehabilitation and reintegration of children associated with these groups.
The STRIVE Juvenile Partnership launched today will play a key role in disrupting terrorist groups’ recruitment of children, supporting children’s rehabilitation and reintegration, and strengthening their resilience against violent extremism. Ms. Alexandra Martins, Head, UNODC Global Programme to End Violence Against Children declared “UNODC’s mandates and experience in the area of violence against children and counter-terrorism enables us not only to gain access to professionals working in the security sector, and to those working for the protection of child rights, but also to build bridges between those sectors.”
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Launch of STRIVE Juvenile in Iraq to combat terrorist and violent extremism recruitment and exploitation of children... read more
1st STRIVE Juvenile Project Coordination Meeting in Indonesia led by the National Counter-Terrorism Agency (BNPT) and co-chaired by the EU and UNODC... read more
Presentation of STRIVE Juvenile during the 30th CCPCJ Special Event on the 'UNODC Roadmap', which gathers high-level speakers from partner countries... read moreNewsroom
During the Special Event, the new project STRIVE Juvenile has been presented. STRIVE Juvenile: Preventing and Responding to Violence against Children by Terrorist and Violent Extremist Groups is a three-year (2021-2024), EUR 5.5 million initiative by the European Union and UNODC. The project aims to partner with the selected countries, the Republic of Indonesia, the Republic of Iraq and the Federal Republic of Nigeria, for the development and implementation of comprehensive national responses to prevent and counter violent extremism affecting children, in full respect of human rights, gender equality and international law... Read more