The past months have brought news of the high profile cases of Edward Snowden and Chelsea Manning, US soldiers who have gone public with stories of military activities the army hoped would stay secret.
Following the huge increase in the persecution of COs in Greece since the beginning of the year, the Association of COs in Greece has issued an open letter calling for support. It's available in English, French, German and Spanish.
Research from Child Soldiers International suggests that the Burmese military is still recruiting children, one year after the Myanmar government made a commitment to the United Nations to stop doing so. Whilst they did release 66 children from the military last month, many more remain. The Tatmadaw (the Myanmar Armed Forces) has continued to recruit since it signed the Joint Action Plan with the UN last year, although in lower numbers than those previously reported.
On 14th June this year the Norwegian parliament decided to introduce conscription for women. The question was on the agenda of all the political parties’ yearly meetings this spring, spearheaded by women from a young generation. The most surprising thing, bearing in mind the Norwegian context, is that the socialist party’s young women were at the very front in calling for this change.
Azerbaijan's two known imprisoned conscientious objectors – both Jehovah's Witnesses - have been freed as part of a prisoner amnesty to mark what would have been the late President Heydar Aliev's 90th birthday. Of the two known imprisoned conscientious objectors, Fakhraddin Mirzayev was amnestied on 22 May after eight months' imprisonment and Kamran Mirzayev (no relation) was amnestied on 20 June after three months' imprisonment.
In a powerful reminder of the ongoing problem of batidas (forced recruitment raids on the streets, like press gangs), Colombian CO Juan Carlos Poveda Camaro (http://www.wri-irg.org/node/21996) was recruited in Villavicencio, and held for 45 days.