From Child Soldier to Ex-Fighter, Female Fighters, Demobilisation and Reintegration in Ethiopia

"This monograph seeks to examine the process of engagement, demobilisation and reintegration of female ex-combatants who entered military units as youth (those younger than 24). Many demobilisation and reintegration programmes overlook issues of gender, and often render women and their particular experiences in returning to communities invisible. Women and their constructions of self and their social/ economic/political world are presumably changed as a result of their experiences as combatants. Yet they often return to a society where women are still tied to traditional roles. This study sought to examine whether the changes wrought in female ex-combatants’self-view and world-view placed them in either a respected/ empowered position, or in a position in conflict with broader society. It focuses on women who entered fighting forces as youths, that is, less than 24 years."