KidsRights denounces the restraint of the Security Council to refer the situation in Syria to the International Criminal Court (ICC), providing the Court with the required jurisdiction for the effective investigation and prosecution of war crimes against children in Syria. According to KidsRights, this is unacceptable, since the ICC can protect children in war zones from harm and secure their justice. Mr. Dullaert, Founder and Chairman of KidsRights is a keynote speaker tomorrow at the launch of the Policy on Children at the ICC.
The launch concerns a new policy of the ICC, facilitating the effective investigation and prosecution of war crimes against or affecting children. A very positive development according to KidsRights, that expects the policy will allow for better protection of – and justice for – those who are the most vulnerable in the context of violent conflict. “Children are among the principal victims of war; they are particularly vulnerable for violence, exploitation and abuse in times of conflict.” says Dullaert.
Over the last year, KidsRights contributed to the development of the ICC Policy on Children. Dullaert applauds the determination of the ICC to involve children themselves in developing this policy. The KidsRights Youngsters, the remarkable group of International Children’s Peace Prize winners, were thoroughly consulted by the ICC.
According to KidsRights, particularly because of this strengthened focus on children, it is of key importance that the ICC investigates those situations where its work is needed the most. The raging war in Syria is currently one of the world’s most violent hotbeds. Here, every day, children are victimized. They are forced to live under cruel and dangerous circumstances. It is of key importance that the members of the UN Security Council reach agreement – without further delay – and refer the situation in Syria to the International Criminal Court. Dullaert: “As long as the International Criminal Court does not have the required jurisdiction to intervene in situations where it is needed the most, it will not truly be able to put children first.”
With this urgent appeal, KidsRights aims to attain acclaim for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Very recently, on October 28, the UN Secretary-General condemned the reported attack on a school in Aleppo, which killed a number of children. The UN Secretary-General: “Such attacks, if deliberate, may amount to war crimes. The Secretary General reiterates his call on the Security Council to refer the situation in Syria to the International Criminal Court.
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