UN / CHILDREN AND CONFLICT

19-Sep-2012 00:02:51
For the first time since the Security Council held its first open debate on children and armed conflict in 1999, a resolution on the issue was adopted today (19 September) without full support from the Council. UNTV
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STORY: UN / CHILDREN AND CONFLICT
TRT: 2.51
SOURCE: UNTV
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / CHINESE / NATS

DATELINE: 19 SEPTEMBER 2012, NEW YORK CITY / FILE
SHOTLIST
FILE – RECENT, NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, exterior United Nations headquarters

19 SEPTEMBER 2012, NEW YORK CITY

2. Various shots, Security Council vote
3. Med shot, delegates
4. SOUNDBITE (Chinese) Li Baodong, Permanent Representative of China to the United Nations:
“China has taken a constructive approach from the very beginning in the consultations of the draft resolution. We repeatedly emphasised that all sides of the Council should be patient in consultations and properly address the major concerns on the draft resolution so as to make sure that consensus can be reached and the Council can have a unified voice in the question of protecting children. However this draft resolution has failed to accommodate reasonable concerns from Council members and was hastily put to vote without adequate consultations.”
5. Med shot, delegates
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Leila Zerrougui, Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict:
“Of the 52 parties listed, 32 persistent perpetrators have been listed for five years or more. The majority are non-State actors operating in situations where Governments may have the willingness but not always the capacities to take measures. This is where the Council can play a critical role. Mr. President, members of the Council, the cost of inaction has become too high. It is time to show your determination to act.”
7. Med shot, delegates
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Anthony Lake, Executive Director of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF):
“The responsibility of Governments to their citizens and of citizens to each other is most fully measured by their accountability to the most vulnerable in their societies. They must therefore support efforts to monitor, report and respond to grave violations to children and their rights. Governments and others must allow UN involvement to help them establish national systems to prevent and sanction violations and deliver the right response services to those who need them without delay.”
9. Wide shot, Security Council
10. Wide shot, Zerrougui and Ambassador Peter Wittig of Germany walk up to the stakeout position

FILE – RECENT, NEW YORK CITY

11. Close up, reporter’s notepad

19 SEPTEMBER 2012, NEW YORK CITY

12. SOUNDBITE (English) Peter Wittig, Permanent Representative of Germany to the United Nations:
“I cannot hide that safeguarding the integrity of the current mechanisms of the United Nations; the mandate for the SRSG, the work of the Working Group of the Security Council, the reporting mechanisms of the Secretary-General, to safeguard those mechanisms came with a price. We would certainly have preferred to achieve unanimity in the Council, but it was not meant to be.”
FILE – RECENT, NEW YORK CITY

13. Close up, cameras
STORYLINE
For the first time since the Security Council held its first open debate on children and armed conflict in 1999, a resolution on the issue was adopted today (19 September) without full support from the Council.

China, Russia, Pakistan and Azerbaijan abstained from the vote due to ongoing concerns about the text. Previous resolutions in 1999, 2005 and 2011 were all approved unanimously.

Ambassador Li Baodong of China said “this draft resolution has failed to accommodate reasonable concerns from Council members and was hastily put to vote without adequate consultations.”

The resolution, which was approved by 11 votes in favour, demanded that parties to armed conflict which commit grave abuses against children, including those who recruit and use children, kill and maim, commit sexual violence or attack schools and hospitals, immediately halt such practices and take special measures to protect children.

The Secretary-General’s latest report on children and armed conflict, released in June, named 52 parties on its ‘list of shame’ of those who practice the specified abuses. It included four new parties in Sudan, Yemen and Syria.

The Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict, Leila Zerrougui, said “of the 52 parties listed, 32 persistent perpetrators have been listed for five years or more”, the majority of which are non-state actors “operating in situations where Governments may have the willingness but not always the capacities to take measures.”

Zerrougui said the Council “can play a critical role” in this area and added that “the cost of inaction has become too high.”

She said it is time for Council members to show a “determination to act.”

Zerrougui, said the situations in Libya, Syria and Mali pose new threats for children which the Council, along with her office and its partners, must address.

The Executive Director of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), Anthony Lake, told the Council that “the responsibility of Governments to their citizens and of citizens to each other is most fully measured by their accountability to the most vulnerable in their societies.”

He called on states to “support efforts to monitor, report and respond to grave violations to children and their rights” and said “governments and others must allow UN involvement to help them establish national systems to prevent and sanction violations and deliver the right response services to those who need them without delay.”

Outside the Council, Ambassador Peter Wittig of Germany, which holds the Council presidency for the month of September, told reporters that his country “would certainly have preferred to achieve unanimity in the Council, but it was not meant to be.”

Abstaining members voiced views about perceived inequalities in the language of the resolution and the role of the UN Envoy. Some members said the UN envoy would have the power to report on conflicts that are not part of the Security Council agenda.
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