World Children’s Day
20 November 2019
In 1954, the UN General Assembly recommended to all states to identify an international day to be a symbol of love, brotherhood, to promote international togetherness, to raise awareness among children worldwide,
Initially, the General Assembly did not identify a universal date for the governments to celebrate children’s world day, considering the cultural peculiarity and priorities of each state, related to child protection issues. The first official declaration of Children’s Day was made by Turkey on 23 April 1929. However it must be noted that some countries celebrate this day on the 1st of June. Nevertheless, 20th November remains an important day as it is the date the General Assembly adopted the Deceleration of the Rights of the Child (1959) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989), and is thus generally observed as Worldwide Children's Day.
The world celebrated World Children’s Day yesterday, however happiness was not a common denominator among all children of the world. Despite the positive progress over the last three decades, poverty, inequality and discrimination continue to deny thousands of children of their fundamental rights every year. Figures indicate that there is a rising number of children living in difficult conditions, who are facing a new set of challenges and global shifts, unlike previous generations, which are inversely proportional to the great aspirations on child protection and the international progress in child rights issues. This is evident by the figures announced by UNICEF yesterday which demonstrate alarming evidence on the terrible reality of children across the world today. UNICEF figures indicate that 180 million children in 37 countries are likely to live in extreme poverty, or be out of school, or be killed by violent death than children living in those countries were 20 years ago.
Such figures should consequently urge the humanitarian and international community to raise their sense of responsibility and provide protection to children, through the provision of the right to life, education, dignity, according to the international laws, conventions, and treaties.
GIHR expresses its deep concern in the increase in child mortality rates, due to violence and armed conflicts in 8 countries; Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, Central Africa, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Ukraine and Yemen. Hence, GIHR calls upon the international community to increase the pressure on non party countries of the CRC and its three annexed protocols to join in and become active contributors in providing protection for children against all forms of maltreatment, abuses and violence.
Children are the future of humanity and this day reminds us that “humanity must give children the best it can provide." Thus providing them with a safe and decent living and acting in favor of the well-being of children across the globe will allow the pavement of a better world for children.
With that being said, we at GIHR call for the unification of the international community around child issues and to gather efforts for their protection and provision of the health, education and nutrition they deserve.