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Children's Human Rights

    September 06, 2017

    Responding to the discovery of the body in Gapan City of Reynaldo de Guzman, a 14-year-old boy who had been missing for nearly three weeks, Amnesty International’s Director for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, James Gomez, said:

    “How many more children must die in the Philippines to end this horrific and heartless violence? Reynaldo de Guzman’s family has had to endure the anxiety of his disappearance followed by the unimaginable grief of discovering his body with stab wounds and his head wrapped in packing tape. This is not an isolated case or a mistake, but the latest atrocity in a wave of unlawful killings that has claimed the lives of more than 50 children and thousands of other Filipinos.

    July 26, 2017
      Responding to the UK government’s commitment to ban all new petrol and diesel cars and vans from 2040, Mark Dummett, Business and Human Rights Researcher at Amnesty International, said:   “This is good news for the environment and for air quality, but drivers should be aware that while electric cars may be green, they’re not always clean.   “Our research shows that there is a significant risk of cobalt mined by children and adults in appalling conditions in the Democratic Republic of Congo ending up in the batteries of electric cars. Workers in the DRC, earning as little as one dollar a day and at risk of fatal accidents and illness, must not pay the price for the UK’s shift to electric cars.   “Drivers will want to know that their new cars are not linked to the suffering of child labourers in the DRC, but there is a worrying lack of transparency across the car manufacturing industry, with many leading names failing to disclose information about their cobalt supply chains.  
    April 12, 2017

    In response to announcements by the European Commission on priority actions on child migrant’s protection Iverna McGowan, Amnesty International’s Head of European Institutions Office said:

     

    “Whilst the Commission’s efforts to increase protection for child refugees are welcome and much needed, they do not address the underlying flaws in the EU’s approach to migration that are putting children at risk in the first place.

     

    “Just last month the European Commission pushed for allowing detention of children in EU countries which currently prohibit it. The failure to row back on this policy lays bare the Commission’s incoherent approach to the most vulnerable.

     

    “The lack of safe and legal routes forces minors on dangerous journeys exposing them to violence, exploitation and injury. Children stranded on the Greek islands are living in appalling conditions without access to health care, education or proper housing.”

     

    February 28, 2017

    New evidence has emerged of how the Huthi armed group is actively recruiting boys as young as 15 to fight as child soldiers on the front lines of the conflict in Yemen, said Amnesty International today after speaking to the families of three boys targeted this month by the appalling practice which violates international law. The families also confirmed the recruitment of a fourth local boy.

    Family members and an eyewitness told Amnesty International that the four boys, aged between 15 and 17, were recruited by fighters of the Huthi armed group, also known as Ansarullah locally, in the capital, Sana’a. They only found out that their children had been taken away after being alerted by local residents, who described seeing them and as many as six other children boarding a bus at a local Huthi centre in mid-February.

    “It is appalling that Huthi forces are taking children away from their parents and their homes, stripping them of their childhood to put them in the line of fire where they could die,” said Samah Hadid, Deputy Director at Amnesty International’s Beirut regional office.

    December 21, 2016

    Released 22 December 2016 00:00 GMT

    The desperate plight of a generation of children is in the balance as the bloody battle for the city of Mosul threatens to become a humanitarian catastrophe, Amnesty International said today following a field investigation.

    On a visit to the region this month, the organization met children of all ages who had suffered terrible injuries after being caught in the line of fire between the armed group calling itself Islamic State (IS) and government forces, who are backed by a US-led coalition.

    “Children caught in the crossfire of the brutal battle for Mosul have seen things that no one, of any age, should ever see. I met children who have not only sustained horrific wounds but have also seen their relatives and neighbours decapitated in mortar strikes, torn to shreds by car bombs or mine explosions, or crushed under the rubble of their homes,” said Donatella Rovera, Amnesty International’s Senior Crisis Response Adviser, who returned from a 17-day mission to northern Iraq.

    September 22, 2016

    By Hanna Gros

    Canada prides itself as a place where immigrants and refugees are welcome -- a safe haven strengthened by its diversity, where multiculturalism flourishes. Canada also prides itself as a defender of human rights at home and abroad. Canadians played an important role in drafting the UN Declaration of Human Rights, and Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms has served as a model for human rights instruments worldwide.

    But in recent years Canada has come under harsh criticism from the United Nations and civil society organizations for its immigration detention regime, which deprives children of their fundamental human rights. Under current law and administrative procedures, children affected by the immigration detention regime enter a Kafkaesque world of prison conditions, uncertain lengths of detention, and separation from their parents, that robs them of the opportunity to develop normally.

    August 18, 2016

    Australia must establish independent bodies to investigate child abuse in its detention facilities across the country, Amnesty International said today after it obtained more than 1,000 pages of government documents revealing abuses in two more centres.

    The documents -- obtained by Amnesty International through a Freedom of Information request – showed a number of serious incidents, including where staff at the centres in the state of Queensland put child detainees in solitary confinement, deployed a security dog where a child was threatening suicide, caused bone fractures as a result of restraint and control techniques, and conducted partial strip searches using humiliating methods.

    “These official documents shine a light in the darkest corners of these detention centres, and reveal incidents, and in some case policies, which may constitute cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, in violation of Australia’s obligations under international law,” said Champa Patel, Amnesty International’s Senior Research Adviser for South East Asia and the Pacific.

    May 23, 2016
      16 new civilian casualties, including nine children, documented in aftermath of Saudi Arabia-led coalition’s cluster bomb use   Internally displaced people returning home to de facto ‘minefields’   Use of US, UK and Brazilian-made cluster munitions documented   Urgent need for international demining assistance

    Children and their families returning home in northern Yemen after a year of conflict are at grave risk of serious injury and death from thousands of unexploded cluster bomb submunitions, Amnesty International said, following a 10-day research trip to Sa’da, Hajjah, and Sana’a governorates.

     International assistance is urgently needed to clear contaminated areas and countries with influence should urge the Saudi Arabia-led coalition forces to stop using cluster munitions, which are internationally banned and inherently indiscriminate.

    May 14, 2015

    On 14 May 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada, in a rare decision made from the bench immediately after the hearing, formally recognized Omar Khadr’s status as a juvenile offender. Amnesty International, represented by Fannie Lafontaine of Laval University, François Larocque and David Taylor of Power Law, and assisted by Articling Student Ania Kwadrans, intervened in the case.

    October 20, 2014
    Students at Symmes Junior and D’Arcy McGee High in Gatineau were given the opportunity to meet Emmanuel Jal, a former child soldier from Southern Sudan and a current Toronto-based recording artist.

    by Ali Wagner, Intern at Amnesty International Canada

    Former child soldier from Southern Sudan and current Toronto-based recording artist Emmanuel Jal continues to inspire as his Key tour crosses Canada.

    Last week, 900 students wandered into their gymnasium in Aylmer, Quebec expecting a simple presentation on human rights, but were greeted with pounding hip hop and Emmanuel Jal, leading an interactive and emotionally charged event. Emmanuel’s unique style of hip hop and message of peace and reconciliation engaged students and brought them along on his journey, through his happiest and darkest moments.

    October 10, 2014

    Following the announcement that Pakistani schoolgirl and education rights campaigner Malala Yousafzai and Indian children’s rights activist Kailash Satyarthi have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International said:

    “The work of Kailash Satyarthi and Malala Yousafzai represents the struggle of millions of children around the world. This is an award for human rights defenders who are willing to dedicate themselves entirely to promoting education and the rights of the world's most vulnerable children.

    “The Nobel Prize Committee has recognized the fundamental importance of child rights for the future of our world. The choice of winners shows that this is an issue that matters to us all, no matter what our age, gender, country or religion.

    “Malala sets a powerful example that has inspired people all over the world, and which has been deservedly recognized by the Nobel Committee. The courage she has shown in the face of such adversity is a true inspiration.  Her actions are a symbol of what it means to stand up for your rights - with a simple demand to fulfil the basic human right to education.

    June 13, 2014
    By Adotei Akwei. Johanna Lee contributed to this post. Originally published by AIUSA.  

    In mid-April, Islamist armed group Boko Haram abducted 276 schoolgirls aged 15-18 from the village of Chibok in northeast Nigeria. The abductions triggered outrage, protests and a social media campaign criticizing the response of the Nigerian authorities and demanding a major effort to secure the freedom of the girls.

    Yet, almost two months later, little, if any, progress has been made in freeing the kidnapped girls and the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan and his security forces have failed to communicate a plan or even convince the families of the girls that they are doing all that they can to get the girls released.

     

    Children in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) inhale toxic dust as they mine the cobalt that powers the batteries we rely on for our phones and laptops. Yet electronics manufacturers – global brands including Apple and Samsung – won’t tell us if their cobalt supply chains are tainted by child labour. They have a responsibility to do so –to check for and address child labour in their supply chains, setting an example for the rest of the industry to follow.

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