Tirana - 11 February 2019, Violence against children, especially sexual violence, is one of the worst forms of child abuse and represents a direct violation of their rights. It is also a moral and ethical assault on our most precious values. Sexual violence leads to physical and emotional distress, and often irrevocable loss of dignity and self-esteem.
Against this background, UNICEF expresses its deep concern regarding the recent cases of grave violence against children; how in some of these instances, the most sensitive matters were disregarded, and instead children’s privacy and dignity repeatedly displayed and publicly violated.
Media coverage is undeniably an indispensable part of the fight to prevent child sexual abuse, however un-necessary, in-sensitive and sensational publicity may cause more trauma to the already devastated survivors of abuse, their families and communities at large.
UNICEF therefore calls all public and non-public institutions, members of the community, child protection professionals and journalists to keep the Best Interest of the Child, guaranteed by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and by the Albanian Law on Child Rights and Protection, at the heart of their professional ethic. Respecting children’s privacy, dignity, their mental and physical wellbeing, must be placed above all other motivations and drivers that determine our professional or personal standpoint.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org.