Pakistan renews commitment to protect children’s rights


United Nation

Children were both seen and heard in the United Nations General Assembly on the World Children’s Day, during a celebration to commemorate 30 years since the adoption of a milestone treaty that protects their rights. Pakistan was represented by Alyana Akram, daughter of Ambassador Munir Akram, at the ceremony that was among numerous events this year taking stock of progress achieved under the landmark Convention on the Rights of the Child.
‘I feel extremely proud that my country, Pakistan, was one of the original signatories of the Convention on the Rights of the Child’, Alyana Akram, the Pakistani youth delegate, told the large and distinguished gathering in the iconic hall of the 193-member Assembly. Pakistan, she said, also co-facilitated the adoption of the modalities resolution for the commemoration of this 30th anniversary of the Convention.
‘I am confident that Pakistan will continue to fully promote and protect the rights of all children at home and abroad,’ Alyana Akram added. In her remarks, she noted that considerable progress has been made over the last 30 years, including more children going to school, more widely available safe and effective vaccines, improved sanitation standards and a 60 per cent drop in infant mortality across the globe.
But significant challenges remain, the Pakistani youth delegate said, with 1 billion children still living in poverty, suffering from hunger and malnutrition that stunts their physical and mental growth as well as potential. Food was insufficient, and often polluted by chemicals. Education was not yet universal; nor were opportunities equal. There was growing dangers of exposure to infectious diseases against the backdrop of climate change.
‘Technology has improved our lives – better nutrition, education, access to knowledge and information’, she said, adding that it had also created problems as the internet can be a dangerous place for children. ‘The speed of life could rob us of our youth.’ Addressing such challenges, Alyana Akram said, were essential for full realization of 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda and protection of the rights of all children.
On the Convention’s anniversary, she said the world must look ahead to the next 30 years. The international community must also listen to young voices on the issues of greatest concern.—APP

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