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Asia Pacific Governments adopt New Delhi Declaration on cooperation for children’s rights

BANGKOK, KATHMANDU, NEW DELHI, 25 October 2013 – A New Delhi Declaration, renewing governments’ commitments to the rights of children and pledging to support each other in the achievement of those rights, was adopted unanimously today by Asian and Pacific States attending the Second High Level Meeting on South-South Cooperation for Child Rights in Asia and the Pacific.

The meeting was hosted by UNICEF and the Government of India, whose Minister of State for Women and Child Development (Independent Charge), Her Excellency Mrs. Krishna Tirath was in attendance, along with government ministers and senior public officials of 32 countries from across South and East Asia and the Pacific.

Attendees also included UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake, along with representatives of the Asian Development Bank, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, the Secretariat of the Pacific Community, and the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific.

Prior to adopting the Declaration, participants discussed lessons learned and best practices on early childhood development, children in urban environments, and opportunities and issues regarding adolescents. They also focused on ways to enhance South-South cooperation in the interest of the region’s children.

The New Delhi Declaration reaffirms States’ commitments to children’s rights and sets out a series of recommendations that will serve as a roadmap for future cooperation. This includes collaboration on ways to improve the collection of data on children, and multi-country research into children’s issues and the best means to address them.

The Declaration addresses the need for adequate investments in education, job creation and social participation to address the different threats and challenges faced by adolescents, and to eliminate violence against children and adolescents.

It also recommends that governments seek meaningful participation by adolescents in decision-making, and improve access, quality, and relevance of lower secondary education and vocational training, in order to strengthen the job prospects of adolescents, including girls.

The Declaration recommends enhancement of national and regional coordination on early childhood development, to advance exclusive breastfeeding, full immunization, and children’s access to clean water and hygienic sanitation.

The New Delhi Declaration calls for better access to data about children in urban areas, and particularly about children in slums and peri-urban areas. It recommends information sharing and cooperation between cities in the region so they can meet their potential as places that promote child rights.

It recommends efforts to ensure equitable access to services and livelihood options for the most marginalized and excluded urban children, such as those living in slums, as well as examination of the service issues facing rural populations, to allow for a more holistic approach to rural to urban migration.

The Second High Level Meeting on South-South Cooperation for Child Rights in Asia and the Pacific meeting follows a similar High-Level Meeting held in Beijing, China in 2010.

Delegations of the governments of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, Cook Islands, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Kiribati, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Niue, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Viet Nam attended the meeting and a statement from the Government of Vanuatu was delivered.



UNICEF works in more than 190 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.

For more information about UNICEF and its work visit www.unicef.org. To learn more what we do for children in East Asia and the Pacific, please visit https://www.unicef.org/eapro/. To learn more what we do for children in South Asia, please visit: https://www.unicef.org/rosa

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For further information, please contact:

Jean Jacques Simon, UNICEF South Asia, +91 99105 32314, Email: jsimon@unicef.org

Caroline den Dulk, UNICEF India, +91 98181 06093. E-mail: cdendulk@unicef.org

Christopher de Bono, UNICEF East Asia and Pacific, +66 2 356 9406, Email: cdebono@unicef.org




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