Last Updated: Thursday, 26 May 2016, 08:56 GMT

Child Soldiers Global Report 2001 - Djibouti

Publisher Child Soldiers International
Publication Date 2001
Cite as Child Soldiers International, Child Soldiers Global Report 2001 - Djibouti, 2001, available at: [accessed 26 May 2016]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.


Mainly covers the period June 1998 to April 2001 as well as including some earlier information.

  • Population:
    – total: 629,000
    – under-18s: 302,000
  • Government armed forces:
    – active: 8,400
    – paramilitary: 3,000
  • Compulsory recruitment age: no conscription
  • Voluntary recruitment age: unknown
  • Voting age (government elections): 18
  • Child soldiers: unknown
  • CRC-OP-CAC: not signed
  • Other treaties ratified: CRC; GC/API+II
  • It is not known if there are under-18s in government armed forces due to lack of information on the minimum voluntary recruitment age.


Sporadic clashes between government military forces and the FRUD armed wing, mainly in the Djibouti-Ethiopia border areas, have been reported.


National Recruitment Legislation and Practice

Military service is not compulsory and recruitment is apparently only on a voluntary basis.602 No information is available regarding minimum recruitment age or current recruitment practices. The army is mainly composed of members of the Issa, the dominant Somali clan in Djibouti.


  • Front for the Restoration of Unity and Democracy (FRUD)

On December 26, 1994, a peace agreement was signed between the government and the Afar guerrilla movement, the Front for the Restoration of Unity and Democracy (FRUD). The FRUD reportedly included many young men and boys.603 An armed faction of the FRUD (FRUD-Dini), which was opposed to the peace process, has continued military activities against the government with attacks on military posts and mine planting mainly in the Djibouti-Ethiopia border areas.604

602 RB website.

603 Coubba, A., Djibouti, Une Nation En Otage, January 1997.

604 AI website.

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