THE INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR THE ELIMINATION OF ALL FORMS OF RACIAL DISCRIMINATION (EAFORD)
5 route des Morillons, CP 2100. 1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland
Telephone: (022) 788.62.33 Fax: (022) 788.62.45
Statement Delivered During the 9th Session of the Human Rights Council
8 – 26 September 2008
Item 4: Human rights situations that require the Council’s attention
Iraq’s Children Are Our Children
EAFORD would like to draw for the international community’s consideration a human rights situation, which requires the Council’s attention.
Our greatest asset and treasure not only as individuals but as a society are our children; they hold our greatest hopes for a socially just world and a prosperous future. As citizens of the world, this hope for better times lies with ALL children, not just our own. We must then safe-guard and nurture them all; protect and service their potential to become the globally aware and environmentally conscious adults of tomorrow. This is our moral and ethical imperative.
Keeping human rights in mind and politics out, it is devastating and appalling, to see the havoc wrecked on Iraq’s children: the violence, insecurity, severe malnutrition, lack of basic services, education and sanitation.
A recent study found that the vast majority have been traumatized by the horrors of war, and now have special needs. 92 percent have learning impediments, due to the climate of fear they are forced to live with.
The children of Iraq are facing insurmountable challenges. We are obligated here, right now, to lend our voice to defend and protect the defenseless.
As a first step we urge the Council to hold a special event or special session dedicated to the question of re-instituting the position of Special Rapporteur on Iraq, who was dismissed after the invasion of 2003.
We must make it a global priority, an investment, to save them from the dire straits they are subjected to live in. We are required as adults and as a species to protect our young, no matter our origins or ethnicity; it is the call of nature from man, to the lowliest of beasts. Even animals protect their cubs; can we do less for our Iraqi children?
As humane citizens of the world, merciful and just individuals, please join us at EAFORD, to appeal to the common decency and respect for life within each and every human being.
They too, Iraq’s children, are my children, and also yours; ours, they too, are our future, our hopes towards attaining a better, more just world for all.
Let us not let them down.
Facts to elaborate upon this intervention will be further addressed in a side event on Friday, September 19th.
EAFORD17 September 2008