Commercial sexual exploitation of children is not present in Syria
Syria, Culture, 1/9/2002
A specialized Syrian delegation headed by the deputy minister of Health Dr. Tarek al-Sheikh took part in the deliberations of the second World Congress against Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children held on December 17-20, 2001, Yokohama, Japan..
The Syrian delegation was composed of the first Attorney general of the Syrian Arab republic Mrs. Ghada Murad and Muhammad al-Mazzouk as a representative for the Syrian cabinet.
In a statement to Arabic News, the Deputy minister of Health Dr. Tarek al-Sheikh said that 3048 representatives from governments, intergovernmental organizations, non- governmental organizations, the private sector and members of civil society from around the world met together in Yokohama's Congress, just five years after the First World Congress against Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children held in Stockholm, Sweden as a follow up process to strengthen their commitment to protect children from sexual exploitation and sexual abuse.
Al-Sheikh added that in his presentation to the Congress he pointed out that the problem of commercial sexual exploitation of children is not present in Syria, and that prostitution and pornography is very small, due to the firm social and families ties.
Al-Sheikh added that the fast development of media and communications, " Causes worries, in respect to this subject," adding that " resolutions and decisions which emerge from the " Yokohama Congress" that comply with the peculiarity of our society, will be incorporated in our future work plan, considering this issue as a tremendous responsibility of the state and the society, alike." He mentioned that there are strict laws and acts, which are enforced at present that protect and prohibit the misuse of " our children," noting " our society considers this type of crime most horrible and deplorable." In his debate at the Yokohama Congress, al-Sheikh said that Syrian law prevents the labors of children under the age of 15 years, while pornography and prostitution are forbidden.
He commented that learning is free and obligatory in the primary schools and mid secondary schools in Syria, while health services are available and in the reach of citizens.
He continued that the Syrian constitution encompasses various articles related to child and family care. He explained that this Syrian constitution considers the family as the corner stone in building up the society and also protects maternity and childhood.
The Syrian debate to the Congress, read by al-Sheikh indicated that Syria applies an extensive national program for maternal and childhood care which resulted in a considerable improvement in indicators and statistical figures.
He said that the Syrian delegation agrees that commercial sexual exploitation of children is a crime against humanity and needs global commitment and cooperation.
He said that the Syrian paper proposed to have in the congress' final declaration a commitment concerning the rights of children living under difficult conditions, like for example, occupation. A commitment which protects them from sexual exploitation and sexual assault.
Al-Sheikh added that the participants in the Congress voiced Global commitment to reiterate the importance and the call for more effective implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child by State parties and related Instruments, to encourage early ratification of the relevant international instruments, in particular, ILO Convention No.182 concerning the Prohibition and Immediate Action for the Elimination of the worst forms of Child Labor and the Optional protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of Children, Child prostitution and Child Pornography; Reaffirm their commitment to build a culture of respect for all persons based upon the principle of non- discrimination and to eliminate commercial sexual exploitation of children, in particular by sharing the lessons learnt since the First world Congress, and by improving cooperation in this regard, and to recommit to the declaration and agenda for action of the First World Congress ( The Stockholm Declaration and Agenda for Action).
Al-Sheikh continued that the participants in Yokohama congress also reinforced efforts against the commercial sexual exploitation of children, in particular by addressing root causes that put children at risk of exploitation such as poverty, inequality, discrimination, persecution, violence, armed conflicts, HIV/AIDS and other related social diseases; to take adequate measures to address negative aspects of new technologies, in particular, child pornography on the Internet; reaffirm the importance of the family and strengthen social protection of children through awareness raising, commit themselves to promoting co-operation at all levels to eliminate all forms of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse of children worldwide; and declared that the sexual exploitation of children must not be tolerated and pledge to act accordingly.
Al-Sheikh said that in light of the debates of the Yokohama Congress, the Syrian team urged the Syrian ministry of justice to reconsider and amend reinforced laws relating to child sexual abuse, prostitution and pornography through the Internet; drawing a new legislation by the ministry of social affairs to rehabilitate the assaulted children and enable them integrate into the society; and maintaining co-ordination between the ministries of the Interior and tourism to control the issue of foreign prostitute tourists; instructing sides concerned ( police, justice, health ) to collect statistics reporting sexual assault against children and to report in this regard to the higher council of maternity and childhood care so as to decide the volume of this problem in Syria and find out means to solving it.
Yokohama forum renews commitment to combat sexual exploitation of children
Moroccan official surveys in Yokohama conference Morocco's actions for children protection
Morocco takes part in Yokohama congress on sexual exploitation of children for commercial ends
Please add a link on your webiste pointing to ArabicNews.com and bookmark ArabicNews.com & subscribe to our daily email news bulletin.
| Advertise on ArabicNews.com. MyFlowers.com sold more than $2700 of flowers in one month advertising on ArabicNews.com! Make your company, and products a success. Special rate for new and small business. Inquire!Advertising Info