United Nations

A/51/615


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

27 November 1996

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH


                                                        A/51/615
                                                              

General Assembly
Fifty-first session
Agenda item 106


              PROMOTION AND PROTECTION OF THE RIGHTS OF CHILDREN

                         Report of the Third Committee

                  Rapporteur:  Ms. Victoria SANDRU (Romania)


                               I.  INTRODUCTION

1.   At its 3rd plenary meeting, on 20 September 1996, the General
Assembly, on the recommendation of the General Committee, decided to
include in the agenda of its fifty-first session the item entitled
"Promotion and protection of the rights of children" and to allocate
it to the Third Committee.

2.   The Third Committee considered the item at its 30th, 32nd to 35th,
42nd, 45th, 46th and 49th meetings, on 8, 11 to 13, 18, 20 and 22
November 1996.  An account of the Committee's discussion is contained
in the relevant summary records (A/C.3/51/SR.30, 32-35, 42, 45, 46 and
49).

3.   For its consideration of the item, the Committee had before it the
following documents:

     (a) Report of the Committee on the Rights of the Child; 1/

     (b) Report of the Secretary-General on the status of the
Convention on the Rights of the Child (A/51/424);

     (c) Report of the Secretary-General on exploitation of child
labour (A/51/492);

     (d) Note by the Secretary-General transmitting the report of the
expert on the impact of armed conflict on children (A/51/306 and
Add.1);

     (e) Note by the Secretary-General transmitting the report of the
Special Rapporteur on international measures for the prevention and
eradication of the sale of children, child prostitution and child
pornography (A/51/456);

     (f) Letter dated 27 March 1996 from the Permanent Representative
of Mexico to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General
transmitting a joint communique' issued on 14 March 1996 at Puebla,
Mexico, by the Regional Conference on Migration (A/51/90);

     (g) Letter dated 19 September 1996 from the Permanent
Representative of Sweden to the United Nations addressed to the
Secretary-General transmitting the Declaration and Agenda for Action
adopted on 28 August 1996 by the World Congress against Commercial
Sexual Exploitation of Children (A/51/385); 

     (h) Letter dated 4 October 1996 from the Permanent Representative
of Costa Rica to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General
transmitting the Ministerial Declaration of the Group of 77 and China
adopted at the twentieth meeting of the Ministers for Foreign Affairs
of the Group of 77, held in New York on 27 September 1996 (A/51/471);

     (i) Letter dated 30 September 1996 from the Permanent
Representative of Colombia to the United Nations addressed to the
Secretary-General transmitting the communique' of the Meeting of
Ministers for Foreign Affairs and Heads of Delegation of the Movement
of Non-Aligned Countries to the fifty-first session of the General
Assembly, held in New York on 25 September 1996 (A/51/473-S/1996/839).

4.   At its 30th meeting, on 5 November, the Committee heard a special
presentation of the report on the impact of armed conflict on children
during which the President of the General Assembly and the Secretary-
General addressed the Committee (see A/C.3/51/SR.30).

5.   At the same meeting, the Expert of the Secretary-General made an
introductory statement (see A/C.3/51/SR.30).

6.   Also at the same meeting, the Executive Director of the United
Nations Children's Fund, the Administrator of the United Nations
Development Programme, the Assistant Secretary-General for Human
Rights and the Director and Special Representative of the United
Nations High Commissioner for Refugees made statements (see
A/C.3/51/SR.30).

7.   At the 32nd meeting, on 11 November, Archbishop Desmond Tutu
addressed the Committee (see A/C.3/51/SR.32).


                        II.  CONSIDERATION OF PROPOSALS

                      A.  Draft resolution A/C.3/51/L.31

8.   At the 42nd meeting, on 18 November, the representative of
Namibia, on behalf of Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Angola, Antigua
and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, the Bahamas,
Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia and
Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon,
Canada, Cape Verde, the Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, the
Congo, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Denmark, Djibouti, the
Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea,
Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece,
Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland,
India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Lesotho,
Liberia, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Mali, the Marshall
Islands, Mauritius, Mongolia, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, the
Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, the Niger, Nigeria, Norway,
Pakistan, Panama, Peru, the Philippines, Poland, Portugal, the
Republic of Korea, Romania, the Russian Federation, Rwanda,
Seychelles, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka,
Swaziland, Sweden, Thailand, the former Yugoslav Republic of
Macedonia, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, the United Kingdom of Great
Britain and Northern Ireland, the United Republic of Tanzania,
Uruguay, Viet Nam, Zaire, Zambia and Zimbabwe, introduced a draft
resolution entitled "The girl child" (A/C.3/51/L.31).

9.   In introducing the draft resolution, the representative of Namibia
orally revised it as follows:

     (a) In the sixth preambular paragraph, the word "incest" was
inserted before the words "early marriage";

     (b) In operative paragraph 8, the word "parties" was inserted
after the words "Urges States";

     (c) In operative paragraph 9, the words "to protect women and
girls from all forms of violence" were inserted after the words "Urges
States to implement measures".

10.  At the same meeting, the representative of Djibouti withdrew his
delegation's sponsorship of the draft resolution.

11.  At the 46th meeting, on 20 November, Belarus, Bulgaria, Colombia,
Guinea-Bissau, Jamaica, Kyrgyzstan, Monaco, Paraguay, Samoa and San
Marino joined in sponsoring the draft resolution, as orally revised.

12.  At the same meeting, the Committee adopted draft resolution
A/C.3/51/L.31, as orally revised, without a vote (see para. 23, draft
resolution I).

13.  After the adoption of the draft resolution, statements were made
by the representatives of the United States of America and Malta (see
A/C.3/51/SR.46).


            B.  Draft resolution A/C.3/51/L.37 and amendment to it
                contained in document A/C.3/51/L.38               

14.  At the 45th meeting, on 20 November, the representative of
Uruguay, on behalf of Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh,
Belgium, Bhutan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, Cape Verde, Co^te
d'Ivoire, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Eritrea, Fiji,
Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Ireland, Italy,
Jamaica (on behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that
are members of the Group of Latin American and Caribbean States),
Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Micronesia
(Federated States of), Namibia, the Netherlands, Norway, the
Philippines, Portugal, the Republic of Korea, Romania, Samoa,
Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Spain,
Swaziland, Sweden, Turkey, Ukraine and the United Kingdom of Great
Britain and Northern Ireland, introduced a draft resolution entitled
"The rights of the child" (A/C.3/51/L.37).  Subsequently, Bulgaria,
Guatemala, the Marshall Islands and Viet Nam joined in sponsoring the
draft resolution.

15.  At the 46th meeting, on 20 November, the representative of Costa
Rica, on behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that are
members of the Group of 77 and China, introduced an amendment
(A/C.3/51/L.38) to draft resolution A/C.3/51/37, by which operative
paragraph 35 would be replaced with the following:

         "35.  Recommends that the Secretary-General appoint for a
     period of three years a Special Representative on the impact of
     armed conflict on children, requests the Secretary-General to
     ensure that the necessary support is made available to the Special
     Representative for the effective performance of his/her mandate,
     encourages the United Nations Children's Fund, the Office of the
     United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the Office of
     the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights/Centre for
     Human Rights to provide support to the Special Representative, and
     calls upon States and other institutions to provide voluntary
     contributions for that purpose."

16.  At the 49th meeting, on 22 November, the representative of Uruguay
orally revised the draft resolution as follows:

     (a) In operative paragraph 11, the word "customary" was deleted;

     (b) In operative paragraph 19, the word "all" was deleted from
the phrase "priority concern in all human rights";

     (c) In operative paragraph 21, the words "United Nations field
operations to promote peace" were revised to read "United Nations
field operations, which, inter alia, promote peace";

     (d) In operative paragraph 22, the words "physical and
psychological recovery" were inserted after the word "education";

     (e) In operative paragraph 35, the words "within existing
resources" were deleted;

     (f) In operative paragraph 47, the words "design, delivery and
monitoring the implementation of measures" were revised to read
"design, delivery, monitoring and implementation measures";

     (g) In operative paragraph 50, the words "from within existing
resources" were deleted;

     (h) Operative paragraph 59, which had read:

         "59.  Stresses the need to combat the existence of the
     markets that encourage criminal practices against children",

was revised to read:

         "59.  Stresses the need to combat the existence of a market
     that encourages such criminal practices against children".

17.  At the same meeting, the representative of Costa Rica, on behalf
of the States Members of the United Nations that are members of the
Group of 77 and China, withdrew the amendment contained in document
A/C.3/51/L.38.

18.  Subsequently, Afghanistan, Albania, Andorra, Burkina Faso,
Burundi, Cambodia, the Central African Republic, the Congo, Estonia,
Guinea-Bissau, Hungary, Iceland, India, Kazakstan, Kenya, Lesotho,
Monaco, Mongolia, Mozambique, Nepal, the Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan,
Papua New Guinea, Poland, the Republic of Moldova, San Marino,
Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, the former Yugoslav Republic of
Macedonia, Togo and the United Republic of Tanzania joined in
sponsoring the draft resolution.

19.  Also at its 49th meeting, the Committee adopted draft resolution
A/C.3/51/L.37, as orally revised, without a vote (see para. 23, draft
resolution II).

20.  Before the adoption of the draft resolution, statements were made
by the representatives of Colombia, Burkina Faso, Uruguay, Mozambique
and the United States of America (see A/C.3/51/SR.49).

21.  After the adoption of the draft resolution, statements were made
by the representatives of the United States of America, Malta, Ireland
(on behalf of the European Union) and Costa Rica (on behalf of the
States Members of the United Nations that are members of the Group of
77 and China) (see A/C.3/51/SR.49).


                              C.  Draft decision

22.  At its 49th meeting, on 22 November, on the proposal of the
Chairman, the Committee adopted a draft decision by which the General
Assembly would take note of the report of the Secretary-General on the
status of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, considered under
the item (see para. 24, draft decision).       


                 III.  RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE THIRD COMMITTEE

23.  The Third Committee recommends to the General Assembly the
adoption of the following draft resolutions:


                              DRAFT RESOLUTION I

                                The girl child

     The General Assembly,

     Recalling its resolution 50/154 of 21 December 1995, and its
resolutions 50/42 of 8 December and 50/203 of 22 December 1995
concerning the follow-up to the Fourth World Conference on Women, held
at Beijing from 4 to 15 September 1995,

     Recalling also the Beijing Declaration and the Platform for Action
of the Fourth World Conference on Women, 2/ the Copenhagen
Declaration on Social Development and the Programme of Action of the
World Summit for Social Development, 3/ the Programme of Action of
the International Conference on Population and Development, 4/ the
Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action of the World Conference on
Human Rights, 5/ the Plan of Action for Implementing the World
Declaration on the Survival, Protection and Development of Children in
the 1990s of the World Summit for Children, 6/ the World Declaration
on Education for All and the Framework for Action to Meet Basic
Learning Needs 7/ adopted at the World Conference on Education for
All:  Meeting Basic Learning Needs,

     Welcoming with satisfaction the adoption and dissemination of the
Declaration and Agenda for Action of the World Congress against
Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children, held at Stockholm from 27
to 31 August 1996, 8/ which constitutes an important contribution to
the global efforts aimed at the eradication of such practices,

     Noting with appreciation the report of the Secretary-General on
the mid-decade review of progress made in achieving the goals of the
World Summit for Children, 9/

     Welcoming the report of the expert appointed by the Secretary-
General on the impact of armed conflict on children, 10/

     Deeply concerned about discrimination against the girl child and
the violation of the rights of the girl child, which often results in
less access for girls to education, nutrition, physical and mental
health care and to girls enjoying fewer rights, opportunities and
benefits of childhood and adolescence than boys and often being
subjected to various forms of cultural, social, sexual and economic
exploitation and to violence and harmful practices such as incest,
early marriage, female infanticide, prenatal sex selection and female
genital mutilation,

     Reaffirming the equal rights of women and men as enshrined in the
Preamble to the Charter of the United Nations, and recalling the
Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against
Women 11/ and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, 12/

     1.  Urges all States to take all necessary measures and to
institute legal reforms to ensure the full and equal enjoyment by the
girl child of all human rights and fundamental freedoms, and to take
effective action against violations of those rights and freedoms;

     2.  Also urges all States to enact and enforce legislation
protecting girls from all forms of violence, including female
infanticide and prenatal sex selection, genital mutilation, incest,
sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, child prostitution and child
pornography, and to develop age-appropriate safe and confidential
programmes and medical, social and psychological support services to
assist girls who are subjected to violence;

     3.  Calls upon all States and international and non-governmental
organizations, individually and collectively:

     (a) To set goals and to develop and implement gender-sensitive
strategies to address the rights and needs of children, in accordance
with the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and to take into
account the rights and particular needs of the girl child, especially
in education, health and nutrition, and to eliminate negative cultural
attitudes and practices against the girl child;

     (b) To generate social support for the enforcement of laws on the
minimum legal age for marriage, in particular by providing educational
opportunities for girls;

     (c) To give attention to the rights and needs of adolescent
girls, which call for special actions for their protection from sexual
exploitation and abuse, harmful cultural practices, teenage pregnancy
and vulnerability to sexually transmitted diseases and human
immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, and for the
development of life skills and self-esteem, reaffirming that the
advancement and empowerment of women throughout the life cycle must
begin with the girl child at all ages;

     (d) To take measures to increase awareness of the potential of
the girl child to promote gender-sensitive socialization of boys and
girls from early childhood, aimed at achieving gender equality,
development and peace within the family and community;

     (e) To ensure the equal participation of girls and young women on
the basis of non-discrimination and as partners with boys and young
men in social, economic and political life and in the development of
strategies and implementation of actions aimed at achieving gender
equality, development and peace;

     (f) To strengthen and reorient health education and health
services, in particular primary health care programmes, including
sexual and reproductive health, and to design quality health
programmes that meet the physical and mental needs of girls and that
attend to the needs of young expectant and nursing mothers;

     4.  Urges States to enact and strictly enforce laws to ensure
that marriage is entered into only with the free and full consent of
the intending spouses, and to enact and strictly enforce laws
concerning the minimum legal age of consent and the minimum age for
marriage and to raise the minimum age for marriage where necessary;

     5.  Also urges States to eliminate all barriers so as to enable
girls, without exception, to develop their full potential and skills
through equal access to education and training;

     6.  Encourages States to consider ways and means to ensure the
continuing education of married women, pregnant women and young
mothers;

     7.  Urges States to take special measures for the protection of
children, in particular to protect girls from rape and other forms of
sexual abuse and gender-based violence in situations of armed
conflict, in line with the recommendations of the expert appointed by
the Secretary-General on the impact of armed conflict on children;

     8.  Urges States parties to fulfil the obligations they have
undertaken under the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the
Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against
Women to protect women and girls from all forms of violence, including
domestic violence, sexual trafficking and child prostitution;

     9.  Urges States to implement measures to protect women and girls
from all forms of violence, in line with the recommendations of the
Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights on violence
against women; 13/

     10. Requests all States to implement, on an urgent basis,
measures to protect children from all forms of sexual exploitation,
including measures in line with those outlined in the Stockholm
Declaration and Agenda for Action;

     11. Requests the Secretary-General, as Chairman of the
Administrative Committee on Coordination, to ensure that all
organizations and bodies of the United Nations system, individually
and collectively, in particular the United Nations Children's Fund,
the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization,
the World Food Programme, the United Nations Population Fund, the 
World Health Organization, the United Nations High Commissioner for
Human Rights, the United Nations Development Programme and the United
Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, take into account the rights
and the particular needs of the girl child, especially in education,
health and nutrition, and eliminate negative cultural attitudes and
practices against the girl child in the implementation of the Platform
for Action of the Fourth World Conference on Women and the system-wide
medium-term plan for the advancement of women for the period 1996-
2001;

     12. Calls upon the Commission on Human Rights, while considering,
in accordance with agreed conclusion 1996/1 of the Economic and Social
Council, 14/ its input to the Commission on the Status of Women on
ensuring women's equal enjoyment of human rights relating to economic
resources, to pay particular attention to all the human rights of the
girl child;

     13. Calls upon States and international and non-governmental
organizations to mobilize all necessary resources, support and efforts
to realize the goals, strategic objectives and actions set out in the
Platform for Action of the Fourth World Conference on Women;

     14. Calls upon all States, all the relevant organizations and
bodies of the United Nations system and non-governmental organizations
to implement commitments to goals and actions relating to the girl
child and to report on initiatives and progress to the Commission on
the Status of Women at its forty-second session, pursuant to the
decision of the Commission to review the progress made in the
implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action relating to the girl
child in 1998.


                              DRAFT RESOLUTION II

                            The rights of the child

     The General Assembly,

     Recalling its resolution 50/153 of 21 December 1995 and Commission
on Human Rights resolution 1996/85 of 24 April 1996, 15/

     Encouraged by the widespread commitment and political will shown
by the unprecedented number of States that have become parties to the
Convention on the Rights of the Child, 16/ while noting that the
goal of achieving universal ratification by 1995 was not reached,

     Seriously concerned about those reservations to the Convention
which are contrary to the object and purpose of the Convention or
otherwise contrary to international treaty law, and recalling that the
Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action of the World Conference on
Human Rights 17/ urges States to withdraw such reservations,

     Reaffirming the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, which
states that national and international mechanisms and programmes
should be strengthened for the defence and protection of children, in
particular the girl child, abandoned children, street children,
economically and sexually exploited children, including through child
pornography, child prostitution or sale of organs, children victims of
diseases, including acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, refugee and
displaced children, children in detention, children in armed conflict
and children victims of famine, drought and other emergencies, and
also requires measures against female infanticide and harmful child
labour,

     Reaffirming also that the best interests of the child shall be a
primary consideration in all actions concerning children,

     Noting with appreciation the important work carried out by the
United Nations, in particular the United Nations Children's Fund, the
Committee on the Rights of the Child, the Special Rapporteur of the
Commission on Human Rights on the sale of children, child prostitution
and child pornography and the expert designated by the Secretary-
General to undertake the study on the effect of armed conflict on
children,

     Recognizing the valuable work done by relevant intergovernmental
and non-governmental organizations for the promotion and protection of
the rights of the child,

     Profoundly concerned that the situation of children in many parts
of the world remains critical as a result of inadequate social and
economic conditions, poverty, natural disasters, armed conflicts,
displacement, exploitation, racism and all forms of intolerance,
unemployment, rural-to-urban migration, illiteracy, hunger, disability
and drug abuse, and convinced that urgent and effective national and
international action is called for,

     Recognizing that legislation per se is not enough to prevent
violations of the rights of the child, that stronger political
commitment is needed and that Governments should implement their laws
and complement legislative measures with effective action, inter alia,
in the fields of law enforcement and in the administration of justice,
and in social, educational and public health programmes,

     Recalling the recommendation made by the World Conference on Human
Rights that matters relating to human rights and the situation of
children be regularly reviewed and monitored by all relevant organs
and mechanisms of the United Nations system and by supervisory bodies
of the specialized agencies in accordance with their mandates,

                                       I

          Implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child

     1.  Welcomes the unprecedented number of one hundred and eighty-
seven States that have ratified or acceded to the Convention on the
Rights of the Child as a universal commitment to the rights of the
child;

     2.  Urges once again all States that have not yet done so to sign
and ratify or accede to the Convention as a matter of priority, with a
view to reaching the goal of universal adherence established by the
World Summit for Children 18/ and reiterated by the Vienna
Declaration and Programme of Action;

     3.  Reaffirms that all States have a duty to fulfil the
obligations they have undertaken under the various international
instruments, and in this regard emphasizes the importance of the full
implementation by States parties of the provisions of the Convention;

     4.  Urges States parties to the Convention that have made
reservations to review the compatibility of their reservations with
article 51 of the Convention and other relevant rules of international
law, with the aim of withdrawing them;

     5.  Also urges States parties to the Convention to accept the
amendment to paragraph 2 of article 43 of the Convention, which would
increase the membership of the Committee on the Rights of the Child
from ten to eighteen experts;

     6.  Welcomes the report submitted by the Committee on the Rights
of the Child pursuant to article 44, paragraph 5, of the Convention,
19/ and takes note with appreciation of the constructive role played
by the Committee in creating awareness of the principles and
provisions of the Convention and in providing recommendations to
States parties on its implementation;

     7.  Calls upon States parties to the Convention to ensure that
the education of the child shall be carried out in accordance with
article 29 of the Convention and that the education be directed, inter
alia, to the development of respect for human rights and fundamental
freedoms, for the Charter of the United Nations and for different
cultures, and to the preparation of the child for responsible life in
a free society, in the spirit of understanding, peace, tolerance,
equality of the sexes and friendship among peoples, ethnic, national
and religious groups and persons of indigenous origin;

     8.  Also calls upon States parties to the Convention, in
accordance with their obligation under article 42 of the Convention,
to make the principles and provisions of the Convention widely known
to adults and children alike;

     9.  Stresses that the implementation of the Convention
contributes to the achievement of the goals of the World Summit for
Children as emphasized in the report of the Secretary-General on the
progress at mid-decade on the implementation of General Assembly
resolution 45/217 of 21 December 1990 on the World Summit for
Children; 20/

                                      II

               Protection of children affected by armed conflict

     10. Invites all States to accede to relevant international human
rights and humanitarian instruments, and urges them to implement those
to which they are parties;

     11. Urges States and other parties to armed conflict to respect
international humanitarian law;

     12. Calls upon States fully to respect the provisions contained
in the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 21/ and the Additional
Protocols thereto of 1977, 22/ as well as those in the Convention on
the Rights of the Child, which accord children affected by armed
conflict special protection and treatment;

     13. Welcomes the report of the expert of the Secretary-General on
the impact of armed conflict on children, 23/ and takes note with
appreciation of the recommendations included therein that address the
prevention of the involvement of children in armed conflict, the
reinforcement of preventive measures, the relevance and adequacy of
existing standards, the measures required to improve the protection of
children affected by armed conflict and the actions needed to promote
the physical and psychological recovery and social reintegration of
children affected by armed conflict;

     14. Notes with interest the participatory process through which
the report of the expert was prepared in close collaboration with
Member States and United Nations bodies and organizations, as well as
other relevant intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations;

     15. Requests the Secretary-General to ensure that the report of
the expert is disseminated as widely as possible among Member States
and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, as well as
within the United Nations system;

     16. Takes note with appreciation of the report of the Committee
on the Rights of the Child and the recommendations contained therein
concerning the situation of children affected by armed conflict; 24/

     17. Welcomes resolution CM/Res.1659 (LXIV) on the plight of
African children in situations of armed conflict adopted by the
Council of Ministers of the Organization of African Unity at its
sixty-fourth ordinary session, held at Yaounde' from 1 to 5 July
1996; 25/

     18. Recommends that States parties to the Convention promote a
wide dissemination of and awareness on relevant standards on the
rights of the child and develop education and training activities on
the rights of the child as a measure to ensure the protection of
children affected by armed conflict;

     19. Calls upon States and United Nations bodies and organizations
to treat children in situations of armed conflict as a priority
concern in human rights, humanitarian and development activities,
including in field operations and country programmes, to enhance
coordination and cooperation throughout the United Nations system and
to ensure effective protection for children affected by armed
conflict;

     20. Calls upon the executive boards of relevant United Nations
funds and programmes, specialized agencies and other competent bodies
to explore ways and means by which they can contribute more
effectively to the protection of children in armed conflict;

     21. Recommends that the humanitarian concerns relating to
children affected by armed conflict and their protection be fully
reflected in United Nations field operations, which, inter alia,
promote peace, prevent and resolve conflicts and implement peace
agreements;

     22. Underlines the importance that measures to ensure respect for
the rights of the child, including in the areas of health and
nutrition, education, physical and psychological recovery, and social
reintegration, be included within emergency and other humanitarian
assistance policies and programmes;

     23. Stresses the need for Governments and other parties to armed
conflict to take measures, including the establishment, for example,
of "days of tranquillity" and "corridors of peace", to ensure
humanitarian access, the delivery of humanitarian relief and the
provision of services, such as education and health, including
immunization of children affected by armed conflict;

     24. Supports the work of the working group of the Commission on
Human Rights on a draft optional protocol to the Convention on the
Rights of the Child related to the involvement of children in armed
conflict, and expresses the hope that it will make further progress
prior to the fifty-third session of the Commission with a view to
finalizing this work;

     25. Urges States and all other parties to armed conflict to adopt
all necessary measures to end the use of children as soldiers and to
ensure their demobilization and reintegration into society, including
through adequate education and training, in a manner that fosters
their self-respect and dignity, and invites the international
community to assist in this endeavour;

     26. Calls upon all States and relevant United Nations bodies,
including the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Assistance in Mine
Clearance, to contribute on an ongoing basis to international mine-
clearance efforts, and urges States to take further action to promote
gender and age-appropriate mine-awareness programmes and child-centred
rehabilitation, thereby reducing the number and the plight of child
victims;

     27. Welcomes international efforts aimed at restricting and
prohibiting the indiscriminate use of anti-personnel mines;

     28. Reaffirms that rape in the conduct of armed conflict
constitutes a war crime and that under certain circumstances it
constitutes a crime against humanity and an act of genocide as defined
in the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of
Genocide, 26/ and calls upon all States to take all measures
required for the protection of women and children from all acts of
gender-based violence, including rape, sexual exploitation and forced
pregnancy, to strengthen mechanisms to investigate and punish all
those responsible and bring the perpetrators to justice;

     29. Stresses the need for all humanitarian responses in conflict
situations to emphasize the special reproductive health needs of women
and girls, including those that arise from pregnancy as a result of
rape, sexual mutilation, childbirth at an early age, or infection with
sexually transmitted diseases, as well as human immunodeficiency
virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, and their access to family
planning services;

     30. Urgently requests that appropriate measures be taken by
Member States and United Nations agencies, within the scope of their
respective mandates, to ensure humanitarian access to children
affected by armed conflict, to facilitate the extension of
humanitarian assistance, including education, and to ensure the
physical and psychological recovery and reintegration into society of
child soldiers, victims of landmines and victims of gender-based
violence;

     31. Recommends that whenever sanctions are imposed their impact
on children be assessed and monitored and humanitarian exemptions be
child-focused and formulated with clear application guidelines;

     32. Recalls the importance of preventive measures such as early
warning systems, preventive diplomacy and education for peace to
prevent conflicts and their negative impact on the enjoyment of the
rights of the child, and urges Governments and the international
community to promote sustainable human development;

     33. Requests the Secretary-General, in cooperation with Member
States, international organizations and relevant non-governmental
organizations, to consider modalities for organizing regional training
programmes for members of the armed forces relating to the protection
of children and women during armed conflict;

     34. Invites Governments to integrate in their military
programmes, including those for their peacekeeping personnel,
instruction on their responsibilities towards civilian communities and
in particular towards women and children;

     35. Recommends that the Secretary-General appoint for a period of
three years a Special Representative on the impact of armed conflict
on children, and ensure that the necessary support is made available
to the Special Representative for the effective performance of his/her
mandate, encourages the United Nations Children's Fund, the Office of
the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the United
Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and Centre for Human Rights
of the Secretariat to provide support to the Special Representative,
and calls upon States and other institutions to provide voluntary
contributions for that purpose;

     36. Also recommends that the Special Representative:

     (a) Assess progress achieved, steps taken and difficulties
encountered in strengthening the protection of children in situations
of armed conflict;

     (b) Raise awareness and promote the collection of information
about the plight of children affected by armed conflict, and encourage
the development of networking;

     (c) Work closely with the Committee on the Rights of the Child,
relevant United Nations bodies, specialized agencies and other
competent bodies, as well as non-governmental organizations;

     (d) Foster international cooperation to ensure respect for
children's rights in these situations, and contribute to the
coordination of efforts by Governments, relevant United Nations
bodies, notably the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
and Centre for Human Rights of the Secretariat, the Office of the
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the United Nations
Children's Fund, the specialized agencies and the Committee on the
Rights of the Child, relevant special rapporteurs and working groups,
as well as United Nations field operations regional and subregional
organizations, other competent bodies and non-governmental
organizations;

     37. Requests the Special Representative to submit to the General
Assembly and the Commission of Human Rights an annual report
containing relevant information on the situation of children affected
by armed conflict, bearing in mind existing mandates and reports of
relevant bodies;

     38. Requests Governments, specialized agencies, relevant United
Nations organs and regional, intergovernmental and non-governmental
organizations, as well as the Committee on the Rights of the Child,
other relevant human rights treaty bodies and human rights mechanisms,
to cooperate with the Special Representative and to provide
information on the measures adopted to ensure and respect the rights
of children affected by armed conflict;

     39. Calls upon Member States and relevant United Nations bodies
and non-governmental organizations to consider how the impact of armed
conflict on children can best be integrated into events designed to
commemorate the tenth anniversary of the World Summit for Children and
the entry into force of the Convention;

                                      III

                   Refugee and internally displaced children

     40. Urges Governments to pay particular attention to the
situation of refugee and internally displaced children by continuing
to design and improve the implementation of policies for their care
and well-being with the necessary international cooperation, in
particular that of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner
for Refugees and the United Nations Children's Fund; 

     41. Calls upon States and United Nations bodies, in recognizing
the particular vulnerability of refugee and internally displaced
children, to protect both their safety and their developmental needs,
including health, education and psychosocial rehabilitation;

     42. Calls upon States and United Nations bodies and other
agencies to ensure the early identification and registration of
unaccompanied refugee and internally displaced children, and to give
priority to programmes for family tracing and reunification;

     43. Calls for the continual monitoring of the care arrangements
of unaccompanied refugee and internally displaced children;

     44. Calls upon States and other parties to armed conflict to
recognize the particular vulnerability of refugee and internally
displaced children to recruitment into armed forces and to sexual
violence, exploitation and abuse, and to enhance protection and
assistance mechanisms;

     45. Calls upon the United Nations Children's Fund and other
relevant United Nations bodies and agencies and governmental and non-
governmental organizations to continue to adopt all necessary measures
to ensure the survival, assistance and protection of internally
displaced children;

     46. Stresses the special vulnerability of households headed by
children, and calls upon Governments and United Nations bodies to give
urgent attention to their situation and to develop policy and
programme guidelines to ensure their protection and care, in the best
interests of the child;

     47. Also stresses that women and youth be fully involved in the
design, delivery, monitoring and implementation of measures to protect
them from sexual violence and the recruitment of children into the
armed forces;

                                      IV

           Prevention and eradication of the sale of children and of
           their sexual exploitation, including child prostitution  
                             and child pornography

     48. Welcomes the interim report of the Special Rapporteur of the
Commission on Human Rights on the sale of children, child prostitution
and child pornography; 27/

     49. Expresses its support for the work of the Special Rapporteur
appointed by the Commission on Human Rights to examine, all over the
world, the question of the sale of children, child prostitution and
child pornography;

     50. Requests the Secretary-General to provide the Special
Rapporteur with all necessary human and financial assistance to make
the full discharge of the mandate possible and to enable her to submit
an interim report to the General Assembly at its fifty-second session
and a report to the Commission on Human Rights at its fifty-third
session;

     51. Supports the work of the working group of the Commission on
Human Rights on a draft optional protocol to the Convention on the
Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and
child pornography, and expresses the hope that it will make further
progress prior to the fifty-third session of the Commission with a
view to finalizing this work;

     52. Calls upon all States parties to fulfil their obligation
under article 34 of the Convention, and also calls upon all States to
support efforts in the context of the United Nations system aimed at
adopting effective national, bilateral and multilateral measures for
the prevention and eradication of all such practices, in particular by
criminalizing the sexual exploitation of children;

     53. Welcomes the convening of the World Congress against
Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children, held at Stockholm from 27
to 31 August 1996, 28/ and expresses its appreciation to the
Government of Sweden for organizing it, in cooperation with the United
Nations Children's Fund, End Child Prostitution in Asian Tourism and
the NGO Group for the Convention on the Rights of the Child;

     54. Welcomes with satisfaction the adoption and dissemination of
the Declaration and Agenda for Action of the World Congress against
Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children, 29/ which constitutes an
important contribution to the global efforts aimed at the eradication
of such practices;

     55. Requests all States to implement on an urgent basis measures
to protect children from all forms of sexual exploitation, including
measures in line with those outlined in the Declaration and Agenda for
Action;

     56. Calls upon States to criminalize the commercial sexual
exploitation of children, and the other forms of sexual exploitation
of children, and to condemn and penalize all those offenders involved,
whether local or foreign, while ensuring that children victims of this
practice are not penalized; 

     57. Also calls upon States to review and revise, where
appropriate, laws, policies, programmes and practices to eliminate the
commercial sexual exploitation of children;

     58. Further calls upon States to enforce relevant laws, policies
and programmes to protect children from sexual exploitation, in
particular by penalizing all those offenders involved, and to
strengthen communication and cooperation between law enforcement
authorities;

     59. Stresses the need to combat the existence of a market that
encourages such criminal practices against children;

     60. Urges States, in cases of sex tourism, to develop or
strengthen and implement laws to criminalize the acts of nationals of
the countries of origin when committed against children in the
countries of destination, to ensure that a person who exploits a child
for sexual abuse purposes in another country is prosecuted by
competent national authorities, either in the country of origin or in
the country of destination, to strengthen laws and law enforcement,
including confiscation and seizure of assets and profits and other
sanctions, against those who commit sexual crimes against children in
countries of destination, and to share relevant data;

     61. Requests States to step up cooperation and concerted action
by all relevant law enforcement authorities and institutions with a
view to dismantling national, regional and international networks in
trafficking in children; 

     62. Invites States to allocate resources to provide comprehensive
programmes designed to heal and rehabilitate into society child
victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation, including through job
training, legal assistance and confidential health care, and to take
all appropriate measures to promote their physical and psychological
recovery and social reintegration;

     63. Stresses the need to strengthen partnerships between
Governments, international organizations and all sectors of civil
society, in particular non-governmental organizations, in order to
achieve these objectives;

                                       V

                  Elimination of exploitation of child labour

     64. Encourages Member States that have not yet done so to ratify
the conventions of the International Labour Organization relating to
the elimination of exploitation of child labour, in particular those
concerning the minimum age for employment, the abolition of forced
labour and the prohibition of particularly hazardous work for
children, and to implement them;

     65. Calls upon Governments to take legislative, administrative,
social and educational measures to ensure the protection of children
from economic exploitation, in particular the protection from
performing any work that is likely to be hazardous or to interfere
with the child's education, or to be harmful to the child's health or
physical, mental, spiritual, moral or social development;

     66. Urges Governments to take all necessary measures, as a matter
of priority, to eliminate all extreme forms of child labour, such as
forced labour, bonded labour and other forms of slavery;

     67. Encourages, in particular, Governments to take the necessary
legislative, administrative, social and educational measures to
provide for a minimum age or minimum ages for admission to employment,
appropriate regulations of the hours and conditions of employment and
appropriate penalties or other sanctions to ensure the effective
enforcement of these measures;

     68. Invites Governments, in accordance with the commitments made
at the World Summit for Social Development held at Copenhagen in March
1995, 30/ to set specific target dates for eliminating all forms of
child labour that are contrary to accepted international standards and
ensuring the full enforcement of relevant existing laws and, where
appropriate, enacting the legislation necessary to implement
obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child16 and
International Labour Organization standards ensuring the protection of
working children;

     69. Encourages Member States to strengthen international
cooperation, such as through the United Nations programme of advisory
services in the field of human right and the International Programme
on the Elimination of Child Labour of the International Labour
Organization and activities of the United Nations Children's Fund as a
means of assisting Governments in preventing or combating violations
of the rights of the child, including the exploitation of child
labour;

     70. Recognizes the measures taken by Governments to eliminate the
exploitation of child labour, calls upon relevant United Nations
bodies and agencies, in particular the United Nations Children's Fund
and the International Labour Organization, to support national efforts
in this regard;

     71. Requests that measures be taken by Governments, at the
national and international levels, within the framework of
multisectoral approaches, to end exploitation of child labour in line
with the commitments undertaken at the World Summit for Social
Development and at the Fourth World Conference on Women, held at
Beijing in September 1995, 31/ and taking into account the results
of other relevant United Nations conferences;

     72. Calls upon Governments to translate into concrete action
their commitment to the progressive and effective elimination of child
labour and to implement, inter alia, national action plans and the
resolution on the elimination of child labour adopted by the
International Labour Conference at its eighty-third session, as well
as other relevant resolutions on the subject adopted by the General
Assembly and the Commission on Human Rights;

     73. Requests the Secretary-General, when reporting on the
implementation of the present resolution, to cooperate closely and at
an early stage with relevant actors and United Nations organizations
and bodies, in particular the International Labour Organization and
the United Nations Children's Fund, in order to provide information on
initiatives aimed at eliminating exploitation of child labour and to
recommend ways and means of improving cooperation at the national and
international levels in this field;

                                      VI

                         The plight of street children

     74. Expresses grave concern at the continued growth in the number
of incidents worldwide and at reports of children living or working on
the streets being involved in and affected by serious crime, drug
abuse, violence and prostitution;

     75. Urges Governments to continue actively to seek comprehensive
solutions to tackle the problems of children living or working on the
streets, to take measures to ensure their reintegration into society
and to provide, inter alia, adequate nutrition, shelter, health care
and education, taking into account that such children are particularly
vulnerable to all forms of abuse, exploitation and neglect;

     76. Strongly urges all Governments to guarantee the respect for
all human rights and fundamental freedoms, particularly the right to
life, and to take urgent measures to prevent the killing of street
children and to combat torture and violence against them, and to
ensure that legal and juridical processes respect children's rights in
order to protect them against the arbitrary deprivation of liberty,
maltreatment or abuse;

     77. Emphasizes that strict compliance with the provisions of the
Convention and other relevant human rights instruments constitutes a
significant step towards solving the problems of children living or
working on the streets, including problems of exploitation, abuse and
abandonment of children, and recommends that the Committee on the
Rights of the Child and other relevant treaty monitoring bodies give
attention to this growing problem when examining reports of States
parties;

     78. Calls upon the international community to support, through
effective international cooperation, the efforts of States to improve
the situation of children in need of special protection measures,
including child well-being in urban settlements, in accordance with
the Habitat Agenda adopted by the United Nations Conference on Human
Settlements, held at Istanbul, Turkey, from 3 to 14 June 1996, 32/
and encourages States parties to the Convention, in preparing their
reports to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, to bear this
problem in mind and to consider requesting technical advice and
assistance for initiatives aimed at improving the situation of street
children, in accordance with article 45 of the Convention;

                                      VII

     79. Invites Governments, United Nations bodies and organizations,
including the United Nations Children's Fund and the United Nations
Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, and relevant
mechanisms of the Commission on Human Rights and intergovernmental and
non-governmental organizations to cooperate with one another to ensure
greater awareness and more effective action to solve the problem of
children living in exceptionally difficult conditions by, among other
measures, initiating and supporting development projects that can have
a positive impact on the situation of those children;

     80. Requests the Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human
Rights on the sale of children, child prostitution and child
pornography to submit an interim report to the General Assembly at its
fifty-second session;

     81. Requests the Secretary-General to submit a report on the
rights of the child to the General Assembly at its fifty-second
session, containing information on the status of the Convention on the
Rights of the Child and the problems of exploitation of child labour,
its causes and consequences, in accordance with paragraph 73 above;

     82. Decides to continue its consideration of this question at its
fifty-second session under the item entitled "Promotion and protection
of the rights of children".

24.  The Third Committee also recommends to the General Assembly the
adoption of the following draft decision:


             Document considered by the General Assembly in connection
             with the question of the promotion and protection of the
                              rights of the child

     The General Assembly takes note of the report of the Secretary-
General on the status of the Convention on the Rights of the Child
(A/51/424).


                                     -----


                                     Notes

1/   Official Records of the General Assembly, Fifty-first Session,
Supplement No. 41 (A/51/41).

2/   A/CONF.177/20, chap. I, resolution 1, annexes I and II.

3/   A/CONF.166/9, chap. I, resolution 1, annexes I and II.

4/   Report of the International Conference on Population and
Development, Cairo, 5-13 September 1994 (United Nations publication,
Sales No. E.95.XIII.18), chap. I, resolution 1, annex.

5/   A/CONF.157/24 (Part I), chap. III.

6/   See A/45/625, annex.

7/   Final Report of the World Conference on Education for All: 
Meeting Basic Learning Needs, Jomtien, Thailand, 5-9 March 1990,
Inter-Agency Commission (UNDP, UNESCO, UNICEF, World Bank) for the
World Conference on Education for All, New York, 1990, appendix 1.

8/   A/51/385, annex.

9/   A/51/256.

10/  See A/51/306.

11/  Resolution 34/180, annex.

12/  Resolution 44/25, annex.

13/  See E/CN.4/1996/53 and Add.1 and 2.

14/  See A/51/3 (Part I), chap. III, sect. A.

15/  See E/1996/L.18, chap. II, sect. A.

16/  Resolution 44/25, annex.

17/  A/CONF.157/24 (Part I), chap. III.

18/  See A/45/625, annex.

19/  Official Records of the General Assembly, Fifty-first Session,
Supplement No. 41 (A/51/41).

20/  A/51/256.

21/  United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 75, Nos. 970-973.

22/  Ibid., vol. 1125, Nos. 17512 and 17513.

23/  A/51/306 and Add.1.

24/  Official Records of the General Assembly, Fifty-first Session,
Supplement No. 41 (A/51/41), chap. I, sect. C.1.

25/  See A/51/524, annex I.

26/  Resolution 260 A (III).

27/  A/51/456, annex.

28/  See A/51/385.

29/  Ibid., annex.

30/  See A/CONF.166/9.

31/  See A/CONF.177/20 and Add.1.

32/  A/CONF.165/14, chap. I, resolution I, annex II.

 

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