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Call for Cyprus to ratify convention protecting children

By Konstantinos Kakouros
A LOCAL body responsible for tackling domestic violence has called on the state to ratify the convention on sexual exploitation and abuse, two years after signing it.
The Council of Europe Convention on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse has so far been signed and ratified by 29 member states while Cyprus is among the 17 member states that have signed but not yet ratified it.
Cyprus signed the Convention in October 2007.
In a statement released yesterday to mark the UN’s World Day for the Prevention of Child Abuse, the Advisory Committee for the Prevention and Combating of Violence in the Family stressed the urgent need for the state to take immediate action to protect children.
Apart from educating and raising awareness on child abuse, other key prerequisites for properly handling incidents of child abuse include the need to have clear knowledge of the relevant legislation and procedures to be followed, the Committee said.
To this end, the committee said the ‘ONE in FIVE’ campaign is being re-launched in Cyprus with the collaboration of six institutions, including the Advisory Committee.
The ONE in FIVE campaign was initially launched by the Council of Europe in 2010 with the aim of achieving the further signing, ratification and implementation of the Convention.
The campaign focuses on the growing universal problem of physical, emotional and sexual child abuse.
According to statistics, one out of every five children in Europe is a victim of sexual exploitation and abuse while surveys show that in the majority of cases, the abuser belongs to the close environment of the child.

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