Indian Army troops deployed under the United Nations Organization Mission in Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) have rescued 22 children who were in the danger of being turned into "child soldiers" by armed groups in the war-ravaged country.
Army officials here on Monday said the 16 boys and six girls from Nyabiondo, a village in the eastern part of Congo, were "extricated" in a 48-hour long-range mission launched by the Indian rapid deployment battalion. "The battalion swung into action on September 16 after receiving the information about the children from the local villagers and foiled attempts by armed groups to turn them into child soldiers. The children were later handed over to the UN child protection agencies," said an officer.
Over 2,600 Indian soldiers are deployed under MONUSCO, which is the largest and most complex UN peacekeeping mission around the globe at present, who conduct an average of 2,300 patrols every month to ensure the protection of civilians there.
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