Robin Hammond

Monrovia, LIBERIA

A group of former child soldiers in the gutted remains of the Euro Bank building. Pictured standing L-R: Stevein Lews, 28, (wearing white bandana, also known as 'Chucky'), Amos Harris, 27, (also known as 'Solo Baby'), Emanuel Davis, 23, (red cap). Front row L-R: Ojuku Essey, 36, (also known as 'Soul'), Mohammed Sherif, 28, (white bandana, also known as 'Nothing Spoilt'), Alfred Sesay, 29, (blue superman t-shirt, also known as 'Devil Dancing'). Thousands of Liberia's children were conscripted to fight in the country's bloody civil wars between 1989 and 2003. The guns they held gave them power and status. They took what they wanted from a population that feared them. When the fighting was over many of these former combatants experienced significant stigma when they returned to their communities. In turn, the now destitute adult ex-fighters formed ghettos where they continue to call each other by their war names and respect ranks held during the fighting. Among these former child soldiers Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), with its constituent symptoms of aggression, depression, sleeplessness and flashbacks, is rife but rarely treated.

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Robin Hammond
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28.22 x 42.33 cm (300 dpi)
11.11 x 16.67 inch (300 dpi)
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