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← Pernille Ironside : World Humanitarian Day 2012

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Pernille Ironside is a UNICEF Child protection Officer who has worked extensively in the Democratic Republic of Congo negotiating with militias and rebel groups for the release of the child soldiers they forcibly recruited.

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Showing Revision 1 created 08/23/2012 by Claude Almansi.

  1. (the aid worker
    pernille ironside)
  2. [Applause]
  3. [Anderson Cooper] Thanks. You have the coolest name, by the way, yeah.
  4. [Pernille Ironside] So one of the groups you just mentioned earlier on, the CNDP [Congrès national pour la défense du peuple],
  5. I was part of a humanitarian group that met with him and its commanders for the first time in 2007,
  6. in order to negotiate the release of children.
  7. You know, is that somebody I want to be friends with? Absolutely not.
  8. But it's a necessary part of our work in order to achieve results, and we did.
  9. It took several days in the bush with him and his thousand armed men
  10. who were extremely aggressive, confrontational,
  11. and yet, we managed to make progress during that time
  12. and eventually released, at that moment, about 150 children.
  13. [Cooper] And kids can be saved, they can be brought back and the work could be done? [Applause]
  14. [Ironside] Absolutely. Absolutely: kids - it's not about saving per se,
  15. it's about restoring their rights and and their rights to be children in the most incredible environment.
  16. [Applause]
  17. [Ironside] You know, they all have, like any of our children here, they all have hopes and dreams
  18. and they have the capacity to overcome the violence that they have been exposed to and forced to commit.
  19. And I've seen children make that transformation through the programs
  20. that I've helped deliver with my colleagues.
  21. And I'd really like to emphasize that it's those colleagues who are, day in, day out,
  22. the Congolese and other national workers, who are really the unsung heroes. [Applause]
  23. (I Was Here - World Humanitarian Day August 19 - whd-iwashere.org)