By Libya Herald staff.
Tunis, 12 September 2015:
In a meeting in Tunis with members of . . .[restrict]Libya’s Constitutional Drafting Assembly, UNICEF has called on it to add protection for children’s rights into the draft constitution.
“The discussion we had with the members of the CDA was extremely encouraging and they showed a keen interest to incorporate child rights into the new constitution,” said Ghassan Khalil, UNICEF Special Representative in Libya.
“The current situation for the children in Libya highlights the need to ensure that child rights are well embodied in the constitution,” he added.
In March 2015, the CDA promised to enshrine children’s rights in new constitution.
Two weeks ago, UNICEF categorised Libya as one of the five conflict-scarred Middle Eastern countries with 40 percent of children out of school.
Out of 34 million school-age children in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Libya and Sudan, UNICEF said, 13.7 million were not receiving an education. It warned that losing this generation would lead to more militancy, migration and a dark future for the region.
Libya ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1993.
Since the 2011 revolution, UNICEF has repeatedly called for Libyan child protection laws to be brought into line with international standards, and held several training workshops to ensure children’s rights are protected.
“Placing children’s rights at the heart of the draft constitution is a critical step,” said Khalil. “We welcome the opportunity to work closely with the Constitutional Drafting Assembly and other partners to reflect the best interests of the children of Libya”.
Last week, Ali Tarhouni, the president of the CDA, told the Libya Herald that the final draft of the constitution would be unveiled before 20 October. Other members who were in Tunis have since said it should be ready by 7 October.