CALENDAR GIRLS star DAME Helen Mirren is pleading with the British government to save the children of Uganda who are caught up in the country's ongoing civil war.

The veteran actress is joining forces with charities Oxfam and Christian Aid to put pressure on Prime Minister Tony Blair as Britain begins its presidency of the United Nations Security Council tomorrow (01DEC05).

Mirren hopes to outlaw the use of child soldiers and the kidnapping of young girls for their wives. The two-time Oscar-nominee is also campaigning to donate Britain's $108 million (GBP60 million) aid money to the war-torn country to negotiate an end to the bloody conflict.

She says, "In a year when Africa has been top of the Government's agenda, the war in Uganda should be a priority."