Thursday, July 19, 2018 07:39:26 PM
Tharanga Yakupitiyage :
People gathered in the United States to protest against immigrant children being taken from their families last month. The protesters called for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to be abolished. Officials estimate that up to 10,000 children are held in poor conditions in detention centres in the U.S. Credit: Fibonacci Blue
World leaders must commit to ending child migrant detention during United Nations negotiations next week, a human rights group said.
Leaders from around the world are due to convene to discuss the Global Compact on Migration (GCM), an intergovernmental agreement on managing international migration which is in its final stage of negotiations.
As images and stories of children trapped in detention centres in the United States continue to come out, Amnesty International (AI) has called on negotiation participants to end child detention.
"Many world leaders have expressed their outrage at the Trump administration's recent horrendous treatment of children whose parents have arrived in the USA irregularly. Now is the time to channel that outrage into concrete action."
"The appalling scenes in the U.S. have illustrated why an international commitment to ending child migration detention is so desperately needed - these negotiations could not have come at a more crucial time," said AI's Senior Americas Advocate Perseo Quiroz.
"Many world leaders have expressed their outrage at the Trump administration's recent horrendous treatment of children whose parents have arrived in the U.S. irregularly. Now is the time to channel that outrage into concrete action," he added.
As a result of the Trump administration's family separation policy, over 2,000 children have been separated from their parents and detained since May after crossing the country's southern border.
Officials estimate that up to 10,000 children are held in poor conditions in detention centres in the U.S.
"At the U.N. next week there is a real opportunity for states to show they are serious about ending child migration detention for good by pushing for the strongest protections possible for all children, accompanied or otherwise," Quiroz said.
The current draft of the GCM does mention the issue including a clause to "work to end the practice of child detention in the context of international migration" and to "use migration detention only as a last resort."
However, AI believes the language is not strong enough as there is no circumstance in which migration-related detention of children is justified.
While U.S. president Donald Trump has signed an executive order reversing the family separation policy, he has replaced it with a policy of detaining entire families together.
This means that children, along with their parents, can be detained for a prolonged and indefinite period of time.
"Now is not the time to look away," said Brian Root and Rachel Schmidt from Human Rights Watch (HRW).
"Family separation and detention policies are symptoms are a much larger global issue: how receiving countries treat migrants, who are often fleeing unstable and/or violent situations," they added.
Recently, Oxfam found that children as young as 12 are physically abused, detained, and illegally returned to Italy by French border guards, contrary to French and European Union laws.
Over 4,000 child migrants have passed through the Italian border town of Ventimiglia between July 2017 and April 2018. The majority are fleeing persecution and conflict in countries such as Sudan, Eritrea, and Syria and are often trying to reach relatives or friends in other European countries.
Children have reported being detained overnight in French cells without food, water, or blankets and with no access to an official guardian.
In Australia, over 200 children are in asylum-seeker detention centres including on Nauru and are often detained for months, if not years.
"The Global Compact on Migration…offers some hope, but it will not work if many countries continue to see the issue purely in terms of border control," HRW said.
"In addition, this compact will have little effect on an American president who seems to hold contempt for the idea of international cooperation," they continued.
Last year, the U.S. withdrew from the U.N. Global Compact on Migration, just days before a migration conference in Mexico, citing that the document undermines the country's sovereignty.
Though the GCM itself is also not legally binding, AI said that it is politically binding and establishes a basis for future discussions on migration.
"Recent events have shone a spotlight on the brutal realities of detaining children simply because their parents are on the move, and we hope this will compel other governments to take concrete steps to protect all children from this cruel treatment," Quiroz said.
Starting on Jul. 9, leaders of the 193 U.N. member states will meet in New York to agree on the final text of the GCM.
Bangladesh Bank on Tuesday refuted the allegation that one of the gold bars kept in its highly secured vault by the customs department was adulterated. Following a report published by a vernacular daily that quoted Customs Intelligence Investigation Department report, the central bank comes up with the observation that "the ...
AFP, Johannesburg :Former US president Barack Obama on Tuesday singled out the African heritage of many players in France's World Cup-winning football team in a speech paying tribute to Nelson Mandela.Speaking in Johannesburg to mark 100 years since Mandela's birth, Obama said that embracing diversity "delivers practical benefits since it ...
In the ever-changing landscape of contemporary times, there’s more career crossover now than ever before. Granddaughter of veteran film director Hrishikesh Mukherjee, Tapur Chatterji who made a mark as of India’s most formative supermodels in 90’s has recently forayed into design and interiors and launched her own entrepreneur outfit. With ...
AFP :Twelve boys and their football coach who survived a highly dangerous and dramatic rescue from a flooded Thai cave were discharged from hospital Wednesday ahead of a press conference where they will tell their incredible story for the first time.An AFP correspondent on the scene saw the team, who ...
Actress Elnaaz Norouzi is surprised that there is a controversy about the characters of Karan Wahi and her in the Netflix series Sacred Games. The characters are alleged to have taken inspiration from real life incidents in Salman Khan and his ex-girlfriend Katrina Kaif's real lives. "While shooting the episodes, ...
One can't refute the fact that Vidya Balan is one of the most versatile actresses in Indian Cinema today. The National Award Winning actress has never shied away from going off the beaten track and picking up complex and challenging roles. Needless to say, she has effortlessly nailed them all ...
Sports Desk :French teenage sensation Kylian Mbappe will be donating his entire World Cup earnings to a charity that organises sporting events for children with disabilities.The 19-year-old reportedly earned about US$22,300 per game in the tournament and an additional US$350,000 for helping his country lift the World Cup trophy on ...
US President Donald Trump has defended Russia over claims of interference in the 2016 presidential election. After face-to-face talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Mr Trump contradicted US intelligence agencies and said there had been no reason for Russia to meddle in the vote, as per international media reports.Mr Putin ...
Reuters, Helsinki :U.S. President Donald Trump emerged from a meeting with Vladimir Putin on Monday saying he saw no reason to believe Russia had hacked the 2016 U.S. presidential election, and the Russian leader "was extremely strong and powerful" in denying it.Trump held his meeting just days after a special ...
AP, Seoul :U.S. and North Korean officials held "productive" talks Sunday to discuss the return of U.S. service members' remains missing since the Korean War, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said.Pompeo, who was not part of the talks, said in a statement that working level meetings between U.S. and ...
Business Desk :America's most favorite ribs & steak chain "Tony Roma's" opened officially in Bangladesh on Monday.The first flagship outlet was launched at the most aristocratic zone in the city, NEB (3B), Road#74, Gulshan-2 in Dhaka. US Ambassador to Bangladesh Marcia Bernicat attended the function as the chief guest.Tony Roma's ...
A RECENT study has shown that Bangladesh is among the countries 'most at risk' as over one billion people in the world are lack of air conditioning and refrigeration to keep them cool and to preserve food and medicines while global warming increasing temperatures. More electricity demand for fridges, fans ...