Member states discuss draft OIC convention on child rights

ISLAMABAD, Dec 1 (APP): The second meeting of the open-ended OIC Intergovernmental Group of Experts considering the OIC Convention on the Rights of the Child in Islam was held at the OIC General Secretariat.

The meeting was meant to conclude consideration of the draft convention for onward submission to the next session of the Council of Foreign Ministers in Nouakchott, Mauritania, for adoption, said a press release received here Thursday.

In his opening remarks OIC Secretary-General, Hissein Brahim Taha, read on his behalf by the Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian, Cultural and Social Affairs Ambassador Ali Tarig Bakheet, reviewed the stages through which the drafting of the convention has passed.

He mentioned that the second draft of the convention was prepared in coordination between the OIC General Secretariat and the Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission, with the aim of incorporating and revising Member States’ views so that discussions on it would be concluded at this meeting.

The secretary-general called for concerted efforts and cooperation by member states to protect the rights of the child and to translate into concrete reality those rights guaranteed for the child by Islam and international regimes and instruments.

This, he said, is to be achieved by strengthening coordination mechanisms among national institutions on the one hand and between those institutions and the OIC organs and institutions on the other, and by taking important steps to implement the convention.

He also urged the participants to consider ways to enhance the role of relevant OIC institutions in exchanging expertise, setting standards and mechanisms and following up of implementation of the convention.

For his part, the chairman of the meeting Ambassador Rezwan Sheikh, Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan to the OIC, as Pakistan is the current chair of the Council of Foreign Ministers, made a presentation on the development of the draft convention.

He underscored the need to benefit from best practices from member states and from national, regional and international human rights conventions and instruments on the child.

He emphasized the need to conclude the drafting of the convention at this meeting in order to submit it to the next session of the Council of Foreign Ministers.