The official visit to India of the SR on sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography (Ms. Najat Maalla M’jid) – initially scheduled to take place between the 16th and the 27th of April – has been postponed at the request of the Government of India.
CSCHR will continue to request the Special Rapporteur to visit Manipur during her mission to India, whenever it is scheduled.
CSCHR to hold consultations on sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography in Manipur
CSCHR in association with the Manipur Alliance for Child Rights (MACR) will hold a one-day consultation on 12th April 2012, at the Punya Shelter for Girls, Imphal to meet with child rights advocates and defenders. The consultation will discuss the framework of a memorandum from Manipur to be submitted to the UN Special Rapporteur on the sale of children,child prostitution and child pornography, Ms. Najat M’jid Maalla, who will commence her mission to India on 16th April 2012.
CLICK THE LINK BELOW TO READ THE PROVISIONAL AGENDA
Ms Maalla’s resolved not to box herself in with a strict and rigid interpretation of her mandate, but to remain alert to emerging trends and methods in the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography. CSCHR sees in her broad view of the mandate as an opportunity to inform the Special Rapporteur of the specificity of factors that influence the sale of children including trafficking, and child sexual exploitation in Manipur.
CSCHR also sent a letter on 9th April 2012 to the UN Special Rapporteur to visit Manipur while she is in India later in April 2012.
PLEASE CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW TO READ THE FULL LETTER
The UN Special Rapporteur on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography, Ms Najat Maalla M’jid is visiting India upon the invitation of the government from 16-27 April 2012.
CSCHR has extended an invitation to her to visit Manipur during her mission to India.
CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW TO READ THE INVITATION LETTER
Her mandate is defined by the specific provisions of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography and the Convention itself, these being the most specific international legal instruments on the subject. She will also draw inspiration from the general comments and decisions of the Committee on the Rights of the Child.
Article 2 of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography gives the following definitions:
(a) Sale of children means any act or transaction whereby a child is transferred by any person or group of persons to another for remuneration or any other consideration;
(b) Child prostitution means the use of a child in sexual activities for remuneration or any other form of consideration;
(c) Child pornography means any representation, by whatever means, of a child engaged in real or simulated explicit sexual activities or any representation of the sexual parts of a child for primarily sexual purposes.
The Special Rapporteur will also take other international human rights instruments into account, and some other international agreements that have an impact on the situation of actual or potential child victims of sale, prostitution or pornography. The Special Rapporteur, according to her first report in 2008, wishes to emphasize from the outset that her mandate is set in the context of various mechanisms for the promotion and protection of human rights, in particular within the special procedures system. Her mandate cannot in any sense be taken in isolation from the other mandates. Similarly, the various situations and violations covered by her mandate need to be considered as part of a holistic approach to the protection and promotion of human rights.
A significant part of the Special Rapporteur’s work will involve sharing information and coordinating with those special procedures and treaty bodies whose thematic mandates are by their nature bound up with the issues of sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography, in particular the Committee on the Rights of the Child; the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery; the Special Rapporteur on the human rights aspects of the victims of trafficking in persons, especially women and children; the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences; the Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants; the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention; the independent expert to direct an in-depth study of the question of violence against children; the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict; and the Committee on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families. She proposes to cooperate with the Representative of the Secretary-General on internally displaced persons; the Special Rapporteur on the right to education; the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights and fundamental freedoms of indigenous people; the independent expert on minority issues; the independent expert on the question of human rights and extreme poverty; and the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women. The Special Rapporteur will join with other mandate holders in bringing particular situations to the attention of Governments and other concerned parties. Depending on the type of the violation reported, she expressed her desire to join forces with the Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health; the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances; the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions; or the Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
STATE LEVEL CONVENTION ON UN RESPONSE TO AFSPA AND RELATED ISSUES
The State Level Convention on UN response to AFSPA and related issues organised by the Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights in Manipur and the UN, held on 6th April 2012 at Manipur Press Club, Majorkhul, Imphal, Manipur thoroughly discussed the recent developments arising from visits to India of:
1. The Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders, Mrs. Margaret Sekaggya and her final report at the 19th regular session of the UN Human Rights Council on 5th March 2012; and
2. The Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Mr. Christof Heyns and his general comments, conclusions and preliminary recommendations on 30th March 2012.
The delegates of the Convention:
1. Warmly welcome the general comments, conclusions and preliminary recommendations of the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Mr. Christof Heyns;
2. Warmly welcome the final report of the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders, Mrs. Margaret Sekaggya and her final report;
3. Takes note of the remarks made by the Union Minister of Home Affairs, Mr. P. Chidambaram during his monthly report on 31st March 2012;
4. Strongly reiterate and support the stand of the people of Manipur for the repeal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) of 1958;
5. Warmly applaud the 11 years long struggle of Nura Temsingnabi Irom Chanu Sharmila for the repeal of AFSPA 1958 and to end the summary and/or arbitrary killings in Manipur;
6. Conclude that the situation in Manipur arises from the Manipur people’s struggle for their right to self-determination, endorsed by the Human Rights Committee in 1997 and also by the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders;
7. Conclude further that a situation of armed conflict existed in Manipur since the 50s, and that international humanitarian law is applicable to this situation, which is also supported by the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions;
8. Also recognise that the Manipur peoples’ movement for self-determination and human rights continues to this day with the inclusion of all the people and this movement needs to be strengthened further;
Hereby unanimously resolve:
1. To further the Peoples’ Campaign to Repeal the AFSPA 1958 by fully supporting the organisation of a Manipur National Convention to consider the present situation of armed conflict and international human rights and humanitarian law violations in Manipur, and take up necessary steps and actions to Repeal AFSPA 1958 and advance the agenda for a peaceful political solution to the situation;
2. To urgently compile and publish the relevant recent documents relating to the UN officials’ visits to the North East region of India to further the People’s Campaign.
(Dr Debabrata Roy Laifungbam)
Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights in Manipur and the UN
6 April 2012
please click on the link below to access the full text document
Following up from the recently concluded Mission to India of the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Prof. Christof Heyns, the government of India has responded with mention of his visit and preliminary recommendations by the Union Minister of Home Affairs, Mr. P. Chidambaram in Parliament. The Union Minister has reportedly stated in Parliament that the conclusions and preliminary recommendations the Special Rapporteur is “negative and positive”. Mr. P. Chidambaram also mentioned the ongoing process within the Indian government to amend the AFSPA 1958.
CSCHR is organizing a state level convention on Friday, 6 April 2012 at the Manipur Press Club at Imphal to consider the follow up to the India Mission of the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Prof. Christof Heyns and the subsequent response of the Government of India.