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China's UN envoy says fulfilling children's rights remains uphill battle
November 22,2019   By:Xinhua
UNITED NATIONS, Nov. 22, 2019 -- China's ambassador to the United Nations on Wednesday said that fulfilling the visions stated in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) "remains an uphill battle" 30 years after the passage of the historic document.
 
Speaking at the UN General Assembly's high-level meeting commemorating the 30th anniversary, Zhang Jun, China's permanent representative to the UN, said the adoption of the convention marked a historic commitment to children all over the world and played an important role in the promotion and protection of children's rights.
 
He added, however, that in our world today, tens of millions of children still live in the shadows of war, poverty and disease, and fully fulfilling their rights is still an uphill battle.
 
"Children are the hope and future of states and nations. The international community must perceive the children's cause as of strategic importance to the inheritance and development of the human society and take up responsibilities for the next generation," he said.
 
In this regard, Zhang raised a four-point proposal. First, he said, "we must uphold peaceful settlement of disputes and create a peaceful environment for the healthy growth of children."
 
He recalled that in 2018, armed conflicts led to a record global high of 12,000 child deaths and disabilities, adding that prevention and resolution of conflicts provides the most effective protection for children.
 
Second, he stressed that governments must fulfill their primary responsibilities, expounding that countries should take the development of children as an important responsibility and carry out the protection of children's rights in accordance with their national realities.
 
Third, the rights of children must be promoted and protected through development, he said, as development holds the key to all problems.
 
Meanwhile, the international community should accelerate the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to provide the material foundation and guarantee for the protection of children's rights, he proposed.
 
Fourth, he said, "we must step up our work to support children in difficulty so as to leave no one behind."
 
In this regard, the Chinese envoy noted that the Chinese government has attached importance and shown care for the most vulnerable groups, such as orphans, sick and disabled children, street children and left-behind children.
 
"We have severely cracked down on crimes against children, including violence, abuse and trafficking," he said.
 
Zhang pledged that China will continue to fulfill its obligations under the CRC and engage in international cooperation to push forward the global cause for children.
 
The landmark CRC was adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by the General Assembly on Nov. 20, 1989. Nov. 20 is also observed annually as World Children's Day. The convention came into force on Sept. 2, 1990.
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