Child soldiers hard to distinguish when in uniform

Posted at 02/02/14 1:25 PM

MANILA -- It is not easy for the military to easily distinguish children from soldiers especially when they are already in uniforms.

This, as Malacanang again condemned the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) who allegedly uses child soldiers in launching attacks against the government.

“If everyone puts on the uniform, it’s already hard to distinguish…The military will foremost protect the civilians,” deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte told radio drzRB.

A report from Agence France-Presse said photographs showing child soldiers were left behind at an abandoned camp of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) breakaway group.

The military launched last week an offensive against the BIFF, whose members made known their disagreement over the peace pact between the MILF and the government.

Valte urged the BIFF to give peace a chance amid the number of deaths rising from the clashes. “Many are suffering. Let’s give the [deal] a chance,” she said, adding the military will also be announcing a “breakthrough” within the day.