Ræða Íslands á 34. reglubundnum fundi Mannréttaráðs Sameinuðu þjóðanna

Statement by

Högni Kristjansson, Ambassador


Annual Full Day Meeting: Rights of the Child



Mr President,

Distinguished Panellists,

I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden and my own country Iceland.

The Nordics welcome the focus of today’s discussion on the 2030 Agenda and acknowledges its importance to enhance promotion and protection of the rights of the child.

The SDGs are our common promise to a generation that comprises about one quarter of the world’s population. Yet, too many children continue to have their human rights violated by facing discrimination and different forms of violence.

We remain deeply alarmed in particular by reports that every year, as many as 275 million children worldwide are victims or witnesses of domestic violence; one in five girls is sexually abused at least once in their lives; half of sexual assaults are committed against girls below the age of 16; and more than 1.8 million children are living with HIV or AIDS. These numbers are evidence that we all must commit to do more and better.

Fortunately, adopting a human rights based approach to the Sustainable Development Goals provide a pathway for States to do just that; to identify and protect those at greatest risk of being left behind and unlock the potential of the next generation of parents, workers, innovators, entrepreneurs, and leaders.

The Nordic countries believe that a strong legal protection of children, as well as education and investments in health, including sexual and reproductive health and rights, are central. When a child can make a healthy transition from childhood to adolescence into adulthood, options expand for the future. Comprehensive sexuality education is crucial in this regard.

Mainstreaming the rights of the child in the implementation, follow-up and review of all Sustainable Development Goals are necessary for us to succeed.

We would like to ask the panellists the following:

What in your view will be the most important barriers to break so that this 2030 agenda delivers for all children globally? How can we ensure mainstreaming of the rights of the child in the implementation, follow-up and review of the SDGs?

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