Sudanese rebel group JEM plans to sign a deal to protect children caught up in the Darfur conflict.
UNICEF director for Sudan Nils Kastberg will attend the signing ceremony in Geneva on Wednesday, while the JEM delegation will be led by the group's humanitarian coordinator Suleiman Jamous.
Kastberg hailed the move as a "valuable precedent which we hope all parties to the Darfur conflict will follow."
Under the agreement UNICEF will have unrestrained access to all JEM locations to ensure they keep to the settlement and the JEM will promise to appoint a senior official who will oversee the agreement's implementation.
Among key issues surrounding children in Darfur is the use of child soldiers, with all parties of the conflict having been accused of recruiting minors for combat.
UNICEF estimated late - 2008 that there were around 6,000 child soldiers in Darfur alone, with the youngest just 11 years of age, while most were aged between 15 and 17.
Anyone under 18 is considered a child under international and Sudanese law. However, in many tribal cultures, they are viewed as adults after puberty.
Mediator McNamara noted that under the deal, if UN officials were to "find children in military areas, or in conflict areas, they will arrange for them to be removed."
Meanwhile, JEM spokesman Hussein told AFP that "there are no child soldiers in JEM" and that the agreement went beyond the issue of children in conflict to the welfare of children such as education.
"The signing of this agreement does not mean that JEM has recruited child soldiers. This is not true.
We are taking this as an initiative of goodwill, we want to lead and set an example," said Hussein.