Children are joining a self-defense militia in Mexico

The community police force teaches children how to use weapons.

(CNN)In a remote, mountainous region of Mexico's Guerrero state, a group of uniformed young boys lined up on a basketball court. "Attention! Lift up your weapons now," their trainer yelled as the kids rushed into position, hands firmly holding onto their rifles. The littlest ones are training with sticks, faces covered with colored bandanas.

The children, ages 6-12 are training to eventually protect their community against criminal groups, in a lawless terrain where residents say no one is safe.