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Webinar series

Children’s Rights in Palestine, Touching base on Palestinian Child’s Day

Defence for Children International (DCI) launched a series of webinars on 5th April 2024, International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian Child, to raise awareness about the rights of Palestinian children.

The subsequent webinars are scheduled for 8th May, 17th May, 31st May and one more on 2nd July with a hybrid meeting near Geneva on 2nd May, coinciding with the Annual Rafto Prize meeting of laureates. DCI-Palestine is the 2023 Rafto Prize Laureate.

The webinars bring together a range of high-level expert Palestinian and international speakers to discuss how best to support Palestinian children, meet their immediate needs, start healing the harms caused, provide pathways to a sense of justice and accountability, and ensure their rights are respected and implemented.

2nd July 2024, 14:00 – 16:00 CEST



Moderator: Bethany Ellis, Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict


  • Giovanni Di Girolamo, Head of the Middle East and North Africa Unit, Commission’s Directorate-General for European Humanitarian and Civil Protection Operations (ECHO)
  • Rana Nashashibi, Director of the Palestinian Counselling Centre
  • Francesca Albanese, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967
Reproducir vídeo

Action points:

  1. Immediate Ceasefire: Call for an immediate ceasefire to halt the violence and protect civilians.
  2. Humanitarian Access: Ensure safe and unrestricted humanitarian access to and within Gaza to reach affected populations, including opening all access crossings.
  3. Safe Movement: Guarantee the safe movement of humanitarian workers and supplies to support aid delivery.
  4. Protect Civilian Infrastructure: Respect and protect civilian infrastructure, such as shelters, schools, health facilities, and utilities, to prevent loss of life, disease outbreaks, and ensure care for the sick and wounded.
  5. Respect International Law: Urge all parties to the conflict to respect international humanitarian law to safeguard civilian lives and property.
  6. Medical Access: Allow urgent medical cases to safely access critical health services or be evacuated, ensuring that children evacuated for medical reasons are accompanied by family members.
  7. Family-Based Care: Promote family-based care options for children deprived of parental care, avoiding excessive institutionalisation.
  8. Support for HRDs: Provide protection and support for Palestinian human rights defenders and NGOs documenting the situation, recognising their essential role despite crackdowns.
  9. Accountability and Justice: Press for accountability by urging the ICC to issue arrest warrants and for countries with universal jurisdiction to ensure justice is served for violations committed during the conflict.
Read full summary here

Apoyar el Estudio Global sobre los Niños Privados de Libertad, medio crucial para poner fin a la detención de la inmigración infantil

Artículo únicamente en inglés*

Today, the UN Human Rights Council held a penal discussion on unaccompanied migrant children and adolescents and human rights. On this occasion, Defence for Children International, on behalf of the NGO Panel for the Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty, delivered a statement recalling the need to support the UN Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty as a means to end child immigration detention.

Please find the statement hereunder

Mr. President,

We welcome the report of the Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants on a 2035 agenda for facilitating human mobility as well as today’s panel discussion regarding the specific issue of unaccompanied migrant children.

The SR firmly states in his report, (and some panellists recalled today) that unaccompanied migrant children and families with children must never be detained… both unaccompanied migrant children and families with children should always be provided with alternatives to detention. And alternatives to detention do exist (as we heard again from panel discussions today).

As repeatedly explained by the civil society and independent experts, Migrant children — regardless of their immigration status — are first and foremost children. Immigration detention of children is a clear violation of child rights and is never in the best interests of the child.

We therefore fully support target 4.3 of the SR: « Expeditiously and completely end the immigration detention of children and their families, and protect the rights, dignity, welfare and best interests of migrant children in all cases ».

Member States committed themselves in several occasions, including in the New York Summit last September to work towards ending the practice of child immigration detention, and recognizing the importance of improved data collection related to international migration.

We are unfortunately obliged to conclude that such statements remain often a dead letter and diplomatic language for high level international meetings in Geneva and New York.

One of the concrete actions that will contribute to the collection of data as well as to the identification of good practices and alternatives to detention, is the implementation of the Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty.
As you know, GA Resolution of December 2014 (A/RES/69/157 para 52.d) commissioned the Study. It took almost two years for an Independent Expert to be appointed, Professor Manfred Nowak being finally appointed last October to lead the Study. The NGO Panel, comprising 140 NGOs from all over the world, pledges its full support to him in the exercise of his mandate, to make sure the Study is implemented in a collaborative and participatory approach, including all stakeholders: UN agencies, Member States, civil society organizations, academia and children.

Today, the 140 NGOs of the Panel are particularly preoccupied by the fact that the Global Study has received barely any financial or tangible support from UN Member States, with the remarkable exception of Switzerland and Austria. The NGO Panel is deeply concerned about the lack of financial resources to implement the Study, which will be a catalyst for change and a milestone in the development of alternatives to detention of children, including of migrant children.

In a recent open letter to the UN, UN Agencies and Member States, the NGO Panel calls for immediate action explaining why it is in the interest not only of children but also of Member States to make the Global Study a reality, particularly with respect to fulfilling the commitments made in the Sustainable Development Goals to leave no one behind.

We would like to ask the panellists’ opinion and support for the implementation of the Global Study in link with the issue of unaccompanied migrant children today under discussion.

Download the statement in PDF format

This post is also available in: EN, FR