European Commission statement to mark Universal Children’s Day

Date: 24th November 2015
Category: General principles, Other human rights treaties and mechanisms

The statement was made by a number of European Commissioners and focuses on the post-2015 agenda, highlights a new EU Action Plan on Human Rights and Democracy, addresses the impact of the current refugee crisis on children and concludes with ways to promote children's rights worldwide.

The statement includes:

"While we address long lasting cruel practices, the current refugee crisis and the dire consequences for migrant, refugee and internally displaced children adds a new dimension of urgency. Half of the world refugees are children: they need to be treated first and foremost as children... We cannot afford to have lost generations of children with no or little education."

"Protecting child victims of trafficking and sexual or non-sexual exploitation and enhancing cooperation on these issues with non-EU countries and international organizations are part of the EU Strategy towards the Eradication of Trafficking of Human Beings 2012-2016."

"Promoting children's rights worldwide requires close cooperation with international organizations and UN bodies. The EU has always promoted such cooperation and keeps reinforcing it. Boys and girls are not only the future of our societies: they are the present. If we deprive them of their fundamental rights, we deprive ourselves of their richness. And we fail in our fundamental duties."

"Global peace and security cannot be achieved without fair and sustainable development and respect for all the rights of all children."