26 June 2008 - CRINMAIL 994







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COTE D'IVOIRE: Child sacrifice on rise in election run-up [news]


[ABIDJAN, 25 June 2008] - Child abduction, which is already a serious problem in Cote d'Ivoire, may worsen in the run up to presidential elections later this year as political hopefuls using traditional myths of human sacrifice to improve their electoral chances will fuel an already significant market for stolen children, according to the Ivorian police.

"[Child abduction] is something that needs urgent attention especially in the run-up to the election because a lot of things are going to happen like human sacrifices and other rituals where the organs of children will be particularly in demand," said Sergeant Antoine Goua Bi, a spokesperson for the child protection unit of the Ivorian police, who says child sacrifice always increases around election times.

"The number of children disappearing in Cote d'Ivoire has already reached extremely worrying proportions," said Jean-Michel Boka, coordinator of the Ivorian non-governmental child protection organisation Roxal. "Every day we register three new cases – that adds up to between 60 and 90 cases per month."

Organ traffickers, who slice out hearts, kidneys, lungs and other body parts for sale to medical facilities and soothsayers are the main culprits, Bi said. The children are also taken to work in the sex trade, for use by illegal adoption rings, and for work on plantations, he said.

Parents' chances of getting their children back once they have disappeared is slim. Boka at the NGO Roxal estimated a recovery rate of just one in 20.

Kouassi Bâ, coordinator of the international NGO Save the Children in Korhogo, northern Cote d'Ivoire, said they are working alongside the UN Children's Agency (UNICEF) and International Labour Organization, to raise awareness against child trafficking, but that there is no specific project against child abductions.

However on 30 May the representatives of nine West African countries governments met in Grand-Bassam in southern Cote d'Ivoire to sign a joint accord to harmonise their laws against child trafficking.

The Ivorian ministry of family, women and children said in a statement that it is taking the situation "very seriously" and that further measures against child abductions will be announced shortly.

[Source: IRIN News;]

Further information




CHILD LABOUR: Child Labour, Trade Relations and Corporate Social Responsibility - What the European Union should do' [publication]

Comments were invited on the draft version of this document some weeks ago, and the Stop Child Labour thank all those who contributed.

On 27 of May 2008 the Council of the European Union published its conclusions on the rights of the child in the EU's external action. In point 4 the Council focuses on a number of policies to fight all forms of child labour, including policies on CSR.

But the most remarkable is that the Council (representing the governments of the Member States) has also agreed for the first time to study trade related measures against child labour.

In this document, the authors have identified a number of possible measures regarding both trade relations and CSR which we will of course bring to the attention of the European Union.

As policies on the issue of child labour are now being further developed and shaped in the EU and its Member States (e.g. for the government of The Netherlands it is now a very high priority), the Campaign would continue to appreciate your additional ideas and suggestions for effective policies against child labour.

Visit the pdf of the published version of ''Out of the Work and Into School - Action Plan for Companies to Combat Child Labour'': 
The Campaign is able to send one or more hard copies.

Further information




SAUDI ARABIA: Saudi Shoura to Discuss Children of Non-Saudi Mums [news]


[25 June 2008] - Saudi children born to non-Saudi mothers abroad are facing an "identity crisis," as they are unable to obtain the required documents to ensure their eligibility for Saudi nationality.

The Shoura Council is set to discuss the issue in the coming weeks.

“We are willing to issue Saudi nationality to children of non-Saudi mothers,” said Sadakah Fadel, a member of the Shoura Council.

Non-Saudi women married to Saudi men and have a child are also eligible to receive a residence visa, he added.

Ministries of Interior and Foreign Affairs are working jointly with the National Human Rights Commission in the Kingdom to find an acceptable solution to the problem.

“We receive many complaints from Saudi families abroad; but most of them need more time in order to formulate documents and other official papers,” said Mufleh Al-Kahtani, a senior National Human Rights Commission official.

Some families have their official papers but are clueless about their rights and procedures. “Many people who come to us are not aware of the procedure to be followed and which department is to be approached.

Although they have all their official papers, they are confused,” Al-Kahtani said.

[Source: Saudi Gazette]

Further information



OPT: Siege and Mental Health: Walls vs Bridges [event]

Location: Gaza, oPt
Date: 27 to 29 October 2008

"Siege and Mental Health: Walls vs. Bridges" will be the theme of the 5th international conference of the Gaza Community Mental Health Programme (GCMHP) organised with the World Health Organisation. The aim of the conference is to help academics, policy makers, and civil society groups understand the linkages between siege, violence, mental health, and human rights.

The Gaza Strip has witnessed extreme forms of violence and suffering as a result of Israeli occupation and military operations.

The goals of the conference are to:

  • alleviate the mental health impacts of siege;
  • raise awareness of the international community about the impacts of siege on mental health;
  • influence the political and legal environment within and outside Palestine;
  • highlight psychosocial suffering in the Gaza Strip;
  • provide the international community with a greater understanding of siege and its impact on the deterioration of the mental health and human rights of Palestinians;
  • build local capacities in psychosocial support;
  • enhance cooperation amongst international organisations in different regions of the world.

Call for papers

GCMHP is calling for papers on the following themes:

- Siege and mental health.
- Siege, culture, democracy, and civil society.
- impact of adversity on individual, family, and community.
- siege in international law and human rights.
- international experiences of siege.
- siege and public health.
- siege and development.
- impacts of living in adversity situations.
- history of sieges and their impact on mental health and behavior.
- women and children under military siege.
- any relevant theme will reconsidered.

Deadline: 15 July 2008

For more information, visit:

Conference Coordinator
Gaza Community Mental Health Programme
P.O. Box: 1049 Gaza City, oPt
Tel: +972-8-2825700/10, 2824073
Fax: +972-8-2824072
Email: [email protected]  



COMPETITION: International Children's Peace Prize

Every year KidsRights Foundation organises the International Children’s Peace Prize. This prize is awarded annually to a child, whose courageous or otherwise extraordinary efforts have made an impact on behalf of the Rights of the Child. The Children’s Peace Prize was awarded so far posthumously to Nkosi Johnson of South Africa, to Om Prakash Gurjar of India, and to Thandiwe Chama of Zambia. Om Prakash was himself a child-slave for many years, and since his liberation fights for the prevention of this horrid form of abuse of basic children’s rights. Thandiwe Chama has been fighting for education for the very poorest ever since her own school was closed down when she was eight years old due to lack of funds.

This year again, the International Children’s Peace Prize will be celebrated at the end of the year. KidsRights invite you to inform them about the children you meet and work with and whom you feel might be a good candidate for this Prize. Nominations can be sent to KidsRights before the 1 August 2008.

The nomination form is here, although both the nomination form and guidelines can be requested at [email protected]. For more information, visit


EMPLOYMENT - CRAE - Inter-American Commission on Human Rights

  • Children's Rights Alliance for England (CRAE)

Interim National co-ordinator (London, UK)

The post-holder will drive the national children’s rights agenda following the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child’s assessment this year of the UK’s implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Job pack available from or 020 7278 8222 ext. 29. For an informal discussion about the role, please contact the National co-ordinator Carolyne Willow on 020 7278 8222 ext. 22 or [email protected]

Deadline for applications: July 9 2008 3pm

  • Inter-American Commision on Human Rights

Principal Human Rights Specialist

The Inter-American Commission is seeking a Principal Human Rights Specialist. Duties will include: advising and assisting the Commission in matters relating to human rights standards by preparing for and reviewing cases and legal opinions; providing technical advice on the drafting and application of international human rights instruments; and implementing the system of individual petitions.

Deadline: 23 July 2008



Scholarship “Rómulo Gallegos”

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights is providing a scholarship for young lawyers from Member States of the Organisation of American States. The opportunity will enable candidates to understand and apply the protection mechanisms of the Inter-American System of Human Rights.

Deadline: 25 July 2008




Racial discrimination: Questionnaire for the Durban Review (26 June 2008)

OPT: Israeli military continues to torture Palestinian children (26 June 2008)

Romania: State grows up looking after children (26 June 2008)

Guantanamo Bay: War on teen terror (25 June 2008)



Try this week's quiz here!


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