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HRC40: statement by the Nordic – Baltic States on Clustered Interactive Dialogue  with the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on violence against children and the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for children and armed conflict

5 March 2019

40th session of the Human Rights Council

 Clustered Interactive Dialogue
 with the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on violence against children and the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for children and armed conflict

 Intervention by the Nordic – Baltic States
 delivered by H.E. Mr Jānis Kārkliņš, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Latvia to the United Nations Office in Geneva

Thank you Mr President.
 I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries [Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Lithuania, Norway, Sweden and Latvia].
 We thank both Special Representatives for their valuable work and express support for their mandates.
 We share Ms Gamba’s concern over abductions as a means of instilling fear and terror. We are looking forward to the guidance note in this field.
 We are pleased to see that best practices obtained during two decades of mandate for children and armed conflict will serve as a guidance on the integration of child protection issues in peace processes.

 Ms Gamba, taking into consideration the unanimous adoption of Security Council resolution 2427, what do you see as the main challenges for ensuring that the understanding of child protection as a preventive measure of conflicts is put in practice?
 While we see positive developments in protecting children from violence around the world, including those referred to in the report of
 Ms Santos Pais, we are not doing nearly enough [to protect our children].
 Today’s reality is alarming, as noted by the Special Representative, every five minutes a child dies because of violence and every year half of the world’s children suffer from violence.

 Our countries believe stronger political commitment by states is necessary to protect children from violence. Violence, in all its forms, conducted online or offline, is unacceptable!

 Greater effort is required by national governments to develop national violence prevention and response programmes with effective monitoring and evaluation mechanisms. To ensure protection is effective, we would like to stress the importance of mainstreaming gender in these programmes. The protection of children from violence can not be done without addressing the gender, especially the specific risks, needs, vulnerabilities and coping strategies that girls are facing.
 Ms Santos Pais, we would be grateful if you could elaborate on the best practices already in place to ensure gender sensitive prevention and response.
 Finally, as “no-corporal-punishment countries”, we call on all states that have not done so, to prohibit corporal punishment in all settings.

 I thank you!