Video shows child soldiers in Ukraine? Caution

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 Video shows child soldiers in Ukraine?  Caution

Children in the ranks of the Ukrainian army? This is what a video purports to show, in which we see three youthful-looking people in combat gear. The video has been relayed on Twitter and on Linkedin. On Twitter, a user denounces a violation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, including article 38 guest states not to enroll children under the age of fifteen.

This soldier, identified by France 24, is 25 years old.
This soldier, identified by France 24, is 25 years old. – Linkedin screenshot

FAKE OFF

The woman seen at the start of the misleading video is not a minor: she is actually a 23-year-old Ukrainian soldier, remember StopFake, a Ukrainian fact-checking site. The young woman, named Elizaveta, serves in the medical service of the International Legion. In December, a Ukrainian television program had found the young lady. This one confirmed to be 23 years old “and not 14”, she specified. As proof, her mother showed the television crew her daughter’s diplomas. Elizaveta joined the army after the Russian invasion in February 2022.

The first image of the misleading video comes from a video posted on October 5, 2022 on the soldier’s TikTok account.

Our colleagues from France 24 have identified the second soldier visible in the deceptive montage. Named André, he is 25 years old and explained that he enlisted on the day of the Russian invasion, February 24, 2022. Again, the images visible in the misleading video come from from the soldier’s TikTok account.

As for the last man, we have not been able to find his identity. He already appears in a video supporting the Ukrainian military posted in July on YouTube.

If the identity of this man remains unknown, the symbol on his cap suggests that he is a Ukrainian soldier.
If the identity of this man remains unknown, the symbol on his cap suggests that he is a Ukrainian soldier. – Linkedin screenshot

The symbol sewn on his hat resembles one of the symbols of Ukraine, the trident, suggesting that it is indeed a Ukrainian soldier. You can see this symbol on the cap of Valeriy Zalouzhny, the Ukrainian Chief of Staff.

This accusation of using child soldiers appeared on November 15 on the Russian site Ura news, based on statements by an anonymous soldier. This man claims that children aged 14 to 16 would be used by the Ukrainian army and “probably drugged” during the fighting. The accusation has since disappeared from the Ura news site.

In Ukraine, the mobilization of children is prohibited, points out StopFake. It is a war crime to involve a child under the age of fifteen in a conflict. according to the Rome statute of the International Criminal Court.

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