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Child Soldiers Global Report 2008 - Dominican Republic

Publisher Child Soldiers International
Publication Date 20 May 2008
Cite as Child Soldiers International, Child Soldiers Global Report 2008 - Dominican Republic, 20 May 2008, available at: [accessed 1 June 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.

Population: 8.9 million (3.5 million under 18)
Government Armed Forces: 24,500
Compulsary Recruitment Age: no conscription in peacetime
Voluntary Recruitment Age: 16
Voting Age: 18
Optional Protocol: signed 9 May 2002
Other Treaties: GC AP I, GC AP II, CRC, ILO 138, ILO 182, ICC

The minimum age for voluntary recruitment was 16.


National recruitment legislation and practice

Under the Armed Forces Law, enlistment into the armed forces was compulsory in times of war or serious public disorder, and voluntary in peacetime. The minimum age to be a member of the armed forces was 16.1 However, the government reported to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child in 2007 that the minimum age for voluntary recruitment was 18.2

Military training and military schools

The Armed Forces Superior Studies Specialized Institute (Instituto Especializado de Estudios Superiores de las Fuerzas Armadas, IEESFA) was established in 2005 to centralize all military training and instruction. It grouped eight military academies and institutes, including the Military Institute of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law. Its courses had to be approved by the Ministry of Higher Education, and its procedures and methodology had to promote and defend democratic values, emphasizing respect and protection of human rights and a culture of peace.3


In May 2005 thousands of Haitians and Dominicans of Haitian origin were expelled across the border to Haiti.4 In September 2005 the Inter-American Court of Human Rights found the state's application of nationality laws and regulations to be discriminatory in the case of two girls of Haitian descent, born in the Dominican Republic, who had been denied Dominican nationality.5

1 Ley Orgánica de las Fuerzas Armadas.

2 Second periodic report of Dominican Republic to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, UN Doc. CRC/C/DOM/2, 16 July 2007.

3 Decreto No. 146-05, "Que crea el Instituto Especializado de Estudios Superiores de las Fuerzas Armadas (IEESFA)".

4 Jesuit Refugee Service, "República Dominicana: Autoridades dominicanas expulsan en masa a miles de haitianos y dominicanos de ascendencia haitiana", 16 May 2005,

5 Amnesty International Report 2006; Inter-American Court of Human Rights, Case of the Girls Yean and Bosico v. Dominican Republic, Judgment of 8 September 2005, Series C No. 130,

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