Day of the Girl Child 2019: UN marks 25 years of progress in the fight for girl-child rights

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The global community Friday commemorated the 2019 International Day of the Girl Child under the theme: “GirlForce: Unscripted and Unstoppable” focused on highlighting and addressing the various challenges faced by girls across the globe and celebrating achievements by, and for girls since the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action about 25 years ago.

The Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action of September 1995 is regarded as the most comprehensive global blueprint for the empowerment of women and tackling women and girl-child related issues including women and girls` sexual and reproductive health rights, female genital mutilation (FGM), child marriage, gender equality, and gender-based violence.

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On this basis, since 2012, October 11 every year is globally recognized as the International Day of the Girl Child to promote the need for girls` empowerment and fulfillment of their fundamental human rights in every part of the world.

“Thirty years after the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, 25 years after the Beijing World Conference on Women, and after 40 years of implementing the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women, we are starting to see notable progress in the area of the rights of the girl child,” said a joint statement by the UN human rights experts on the occasion of the 2019 International Day of the Girl Child.

According to the statement, young girls are increasingly being recognized across the world for their energy, courage, and intellect in confronting some of the world`s toughest problems. Adding that youth activism being spearheaded by girls, has brought fresh energy and a renewed sense of urgency to tackling issues fought by generations before them.

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“They have shown that no one is too young to act for human rights, and no one is too small to make a difference. These young human rights defenders are initiating, joining and spearheading movements with insistence and courage, confronting backlashes and attacks,” said the statement.

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“Today as the international community commemorates this international day for the 7th year, we celebrate girls for their achievements and their social activism…we call upon states to take every step to fulfil their human rights obligations and national and international policy makers to hear their voices loud and clear,” the statement noted.

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