The Office of Defense Affairs in the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria issued a statement to the public opinion on the accusations and allegations that accuse the office of recruiting children in AA's areas.
The text of the statement read:
"Once again, the press and the hired pens return to accusations and lies against autonomous administration and its institutions. In this context, as the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria confirms that it respects all international treaties and the texts of international humanitarian law, and we refuted all the lies that had been promoted by SOHR about recruiting children, and we as in the Autonomous Administration in North and East Syria is committed to the agreements and understandings it entered into with the international community, including the agreement signed with the United Nations on June 29, 2019, which stipulates ending and preventing child recruitment.
We in the Defense Affairs Office of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria consider this news about the recruitment of children is false, and aims to undermine the victories our forces have achieved against global terrorism and the enormous sacrifices of our young men and women and our righteous martyrs.
In the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria, we have the Self-Defense Duty Law, which stipulates in Article No. 14 that no young person shall be assigned and summoned to serve the duty of self-defense unless he is over eighteen years of age.
AA institutions of north and east Syria, including the military, operate and abide by all international laws and regulations, while the Turkish regime and its mercenaries send Syrian children to death in Libya, taking advantage of the difficult economic conditions of their families, and it was better for those who call themselves human rights advocates to expose these practices rather than to confirm the accusations and lies. "