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SALAM INTERNATIONAL Organization for the Protection of Human Rights – SPH, in partnership with a number of human rights organizations, issued a joint official statement, expressing their position on the practices of the Egyptian government regarding dealing with children’s rights in Egypt, in conjunction with World Children’s Day.
The text of the statement:
Wednesday 20th November 2019
London – Istanbul
On the International Children’s Day, the rights of the children of Egypt are wasted.
World Children’s Day, founded in 1954 and celebrated on 20th November each year, is to enhance international interdependence, raise awareness among children around the world, and improve children’s well-being. The choice of this day coincides with the date when the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child in 1959, as well as the date when the UN General Assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1989. Which are in need of extreme protection, and considered as a day to defend and promote the rights of the child, and to turn them into policies and operational procedures that build a better world for children. The United Nations has recognized this day as a kind of attention to one of the most vulnerable segments of the people, which needs to be extremely protected, and also as a day to defend and promote children’s rights, and to transform them into policies and operational procedures that build a better world for children.
But it seems that this interest is not there in the policies of the Egyptian government, even if pretended to be interested – but their practical application indicates otherwise. According to the report of the Central Auditing Agency 2018, the percentage of children dropping out of different stages of education among males reached 44% in the primary stage, followed by 39% in the preparatory stage, while the percentage of females increased by 30% in the primary stage, followed by 44% in the preparatory stage.
“Understanding Multidimensional Child Poverty in Egypt,” report, jointly published in December 2017, by the Ministry of Social Solidarity, the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), reported that 10 million Egyptian children suffer from multidimensional poverty. The report measures deprivation based on eight dimensions that define child well-being including: access to water, sanitation, information, housing conditions, health, nutrition, education, and protection.
In a report issued by the UN Arbitrary Detention Group in July 2015, on the resolution no. 17/2015 on arrests by Egyptian security authorities against children, said that 3002 children were arrested from July 2013 to May 2015, and they were tortured and severely beaten in detention centers and lockups.
According to the monitoring and documentation sources of the signatory organizations, more than 4,000 children were arbitrarily detained in Egypt between 2013 and 2019. The signatory organizations also monitored and documented 111 cases of arrests of children in the events of the 20th September demonstrations. Other organizations have documented 192 children arrested, some as young as 11.
This comes despite the fact that the Egyptian government has legal provisions that make it obliged to protect and care for the children and to pay close attention to them, in accordance with the binding provisions in the Egyptian Constitution and national legislation and international conventions. According to the 2014 Constitution, Article 80 clarified the procedures of child protection when it recognizes and affirms, in unequivocal terms, a package of binding rights for the Egyptian child. The Egyptian Child Law 12 of 1996, as amended by Law 126 of 2008, affirms the same package of rights. Egypt ratified the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child.
All these binding texts do not find a real application on the ground from the Egyptian government, which has been busy creating fictitious battles, in an effort to preserve political gains, without considering the real problems that afflicts multiple segments of the Egyptian society, especially children, as one of the most vulnerable segments that require increased attention and care.
Furthermore, the are many cases of violations of children who suffered psychological, moral, social and economic, effects as a result of political reprisals against their parents, due to their imprisonment for political cases, and depriving children of the necessary care, as well as prevent them from visiting and communication with them, in a social disaster that destroy these children.
In this regard, the undersigned organizations do not fail to point out the neglect of children with special needs in Egypt and the failure to work hard on their rehabilitation and reintegration into society. The signatories to the statement, consider that the Egyptian government has wasted many of the rights of the children, abandoned them, and neglected their economic, social and cultural rights as well as the lack of political rights along with the masses of segments of Egyptian society.
The undersigned organizations call on the Egyptian government to work hard to improve the situation of children on various aspects, to protect their acquired rights, and to quickly improve the conditions of detention centers for children from all violations in which they occur, As well as the immediate release of all children arrested on political grounds. The risk of such violations not only lies with children, but also extends to the psychological and moral abuse of their parents.
The international community, and its various mechanisms, should direct the Egyptian government to further safeguards and reforms that protect and improve the care of children in Egypt, and provide oversight and accountability mechanisms to those responsible for any violations that concern them.
– Salam International Organization for the Protection of Human Rights (SPH) – London.
– Justice for Human Rights Foundation (JHR) – Istanbul
– Human Rights Monitor (HRM), London.
– El-Shehab Center for Human Rights (SHR) – London.
London – United Kingdom / Istanbul – TurkeyClick to Get File.