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Parliamentarians across South Asia to discuss child rights

02 September 2019, MVT 09:08
Members of parliament attend a parliament session at Sri Lanka's parliament hall in Colombo on December 12, 2018. (Photo by LAKRUWAN WANNIARACHCHI / AFP)
02 September 2019, MVT 09:08

Maldives on Monday will participate in the South Asia Parliamentarian Platform for Children, hosted by Sri Lanka with the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) for parliamentarians across South Asia to celebrate the 30-year anniversary of the Convention of the Rights of the Child.

At the meeting, parliamentarians will take stock of the situation of children in the region and discuss the key challenges towards the realisation of all rights of all children to ensure further progress.

The South Asia Parliamentarian Platform for Children being held in Colombo from September 2 - 3 will also give parliamentarians the opportunity to make fresh commitments to push the national agendas for the realisation of child rights.

“The Convention has helped to transform children’s lives for the better and has ensured that Governments have favourable policies, changed laws, and made investments so that more children get the chance to thrive and have a good, protected childhood", said Regional Director for UNICEF South Asia Jean Gough.

"Nevertheless, the Convention is still not fully implemented everywhere, and millions of children continue to suffer violations of their rights when they are denied adequate healthcare, nutrition, education and protection from violence”.

This is the third year that UNICEF organises a meeting with parliamentarians from the region to connect them to discuss the situation of children and inspire them to take action for improvement in their lives.

"I am confident that the shared experiences and practices from this meeting will contribute to stronger oversight and more effective implementation of the Convention by parliaments and obligations of the State towards the child," said MP Ali Hameed.

The Convention on the Rights of the Child is the most widely ratified human rights treaty.

According to UNICEF, child rights have not changed in 30 years, but childhood for about 627 million South Asian children has changed, with with the widespread of the internet, the effects of climate change, rapid urbanisation and other emerging issues.

“We see new threats for children, but also many new opportunities for children to realise their rights. That is why we are content to be working with parliamentarians from all over South Asia to ensure that we speed up positive actions for children to ensure a healthy and educated young generation across the region”, said Jean Gough.

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