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Summary: This report extracts mentions of children's rights issues in the reports of all UN Treaty Bodies and their follow-up procedures. This does not include the Concluding Observations of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child which are available here: http://www.crin.org/resources/treaties/index.asp
Please note that the language may have been edited in places for the purpose of clarity.
- UN Human Rights Committee
- UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
- UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
- UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women
- UN Committee against Torture
- UN Committee on Migrant Workers
- UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
- UN Committee on Enforced Disappearance
Last reported on 19 / 20 July 2001
Concluding Observations issued on 27 August 2001
Infant mortality: Given the State party’s obligation, under article 6 of the Covenant, to protect the life of its citizens and to take measures to reduce infant mortality and increase life expectancy, the Committee remains seriously concerned about the lack of measures by the State party to deal with the food and nutrition situation in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and the lack of measures to address, in cooperation with the international community, the causes and consequences of the drought and other natural disasters which seriously affected the country’s population in the 1990s.
The Committee recalls paragraph 5 of its General Comment No. 6 on article 6 of the Covenant, adopted at its sixth session, which recommends that States parties “take all possible measures to reduce infant mortality and increase life expectancy, especially in adopting measures to eliminate malnutrition”. The State party should provide the Committee with supplementary information on this issue. (Paragraph 12)
UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
Last reported on 19 / 20 November 2003
Concluding Observations issued on: 12 December 2003
Education: The Committee notes with concern that existing social and educational policies in the State party for orphans keep them in segregated environments, which can lead to situations of social exclusion. (Paragraph 20).
The Committee remains concerned about the declining attendance rate in schools, from 99 to 85 per cent according to the State party, as a consequence of national disasters. (Paragraph 24). The Committee also urges the State party to strengthen its efforts to provide alternative family care for orphans and to include them in the regular school system. (Paragraph 41)
Children with disabilities: The Committee remains concerned that children with disabilities, whenever possible, are not included in the regular school system. (Paragraph 25).
The Committee recommends that the State party change the present system concerning the education of children with disabilities by allowing these children to be educated in the regular school system. Moreover, the State party should take measures to raise awareness among students, teachers and families of the special needs of these children and train teachers to assist them effectively in regular classes. (Paragraph 46)
Health: The Committee expresses deep concern about the high rate of children under 5 that are chronically malnourished (45 per cent according to government statistics), as well as the high incidence of poverty-related diseases. (Paragraph 22).
The Committee recommends that increased attention be paid by the competent authorities to providing adequate nutrition to children suffering from chronic malnutrition as well as adequate health care, to address the potentially severe consequences on their health. (Paragraph 43)
UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
Not yet signed or ratified.
UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women
Last reported on 18 July 2005
Concluding Observations issued on 22 July 2005
Early marriage: The Committee is concerned about existing discriminatory legal provisions, particularly that which establishes a minimum marriage age for females at 17 and for males at 18, and about article 7 of the citizenship law on the determination of the citizenship of a child under the age of 14. It is also concerned about existing protective legislation, which in some cases is based on the socially perceived characteristics of women and men and which may perpetuate inequality and discrimination against women.
The Committee urges the State party to initiate without delay a comprehensive review of all legislation, with the aim of identifying provisions that discriminate against women, and a process of law reform to bring its laws into conformity with the provisions of the Convention. (Paragraphs 41 and 42)
Stereotyping and education: The Committee notes with concern the persistence of traditional and stereotyped assumptions and attitudes in respect of the roles and responsibilities of women and men, which are discriminatory against women and have a pronounced impact, particularly in the areas of education and employment as well as in other areas of their lives. For example, the Committee is concerned at the stereotyping of women, which perceives them exclusively as caregivers and homemakers and assigns them in areas such as education and employment to spheres suitable to their “characteristics”. The Committee is concerned that such expectations of women have serious consequences, preventing them from accessing rights and entitlements on an equal basis with men and creating a dependency on men, husbands and family for housing, food entitlements and other services. It is also concerned that in times of economic crisis, as in the current situation of the country, women’s prescribed roles and lesser entitlement intensifies their hardship and amounts to multiple discrimination.
The Committee urges the State party to increase its efforts to address stereotypical attitudes about the roles and responsibilities of women and men, including the hidden patterns that perpetuate direct and indirect discrimination against women and girls in the areas of education and employment and in all other areas of their lives, in accordance with articles 2 (f) and 5 (a) of the Convention. Those efforts should include educational measures at all levels, beginning at an early age; the revision of school textbooks and curricula; and awareness-raising campaigns directed at both women and men to address stereotypes regarding the roles of women and men. (Paragraphs 53 and 54)
Violence: The Committee expresses concern that the State party is not aware of the existence of domestic violence and that, as a result, there is a lack of specific legislation to deal with all forms of violence against women, including domestic violence, and a lack of prevention and protection measures for victims.
The Committee calls on the State party to conduct research on the incidence, causes and consequences of all forms of violence against women, including domestic violence, and to include the results in its next periodic report. In this regard the Committee urges the State party to find ways to make visible the existence of domestic violence, for example by training health workers to identify signs of abuse. It also recommends that the State party adopt specific legislation on domestic violence and ensure that violence against women and girls constitutes a criminal offence, that women and girls who are victims of violence have access to immediate means of redress and protection and that perpetrators are prosecuted and punished. It also urges the State party to address all forms of violence against women and girls in accordance with its general recommendation 19 on violence against women and to accord priority attention to the adoption of comprehensive measures, including the training of law enforcement agencies in responding effectively to victims of violence. (Paragraphs 55 and 56)
Trafficking: In the light of the widespread famine and natural disasters that have affected the country from the mid-1990s, the Committee expresses concern about the insufficient explanation provided with respect to the impact of those phenomena on women, in particular on women from rural areas, on women who are the main providers of the household and on young girls. The Committee is concerned that they may become vulnerable to trafficking and other forms of exploitation, such as prostitution.
The Committee urges the State party to introduce specific poverty alleviation measures aimed at improving the situation of women to eliminate their vulnerability. The Committee recommends that the State party seek international assistance in guaranteeing that women, particularly women from rural areas, have equal access to food supplies. It urges the State party to assist women economic returnees who went abroad without valid travel permits to reintegrate into their families and society and to protect them from all forms of violations of their rights. It calls on the State party to train law enforcement officials, migration officials and border police on the causes, consequences and incidence of trafficking and other forms of exploitation so as to enable them to render support to women who might be at risk of becoming victims of trafficking or commercial sexual exploitation. It also recommends that the State party conduct nationwide awareness-raising campaigns on the risks and consequences of trafficking targeted at women and girls. The Committee further urges the State party to evaluate those phenomena and systematically compile information on them with a view to formulating a comprehensive strategy that includes measures of prevention, prosecution and punishment of offenders, as well as measures to rehabilitate and reintegrate victims. The Committee also urges the State party to intensify its efforts to deal with these phenomena through increased international, regional and bilateral cooperation. Information on the results of the research and progress made should be included in the next periodic report. (Paragraphs 59 and 60)
Health: While recognizing that the State party has the potential for providing comprehensive coverage of health services in the country, the Committee is concerned that insufficient information has been provided on the priority focus for the provision of such services in the light of the economic crisis, and that women may be affected more negatively than men. The Committee expresses concern about the insufficient information on the impact of the reproductive health policy in urban and rural areas and about the fact that the policy exclusively targets women.
The Committee requests the State party to include in its next periodic report detailed information about the availability of and access to general and reproductive health services for women in all parts of the country. It also requests the State party to provide information on the impact of the measures taken to improve the access of women, including those from rural areas, to reproductive and sexual health programmes, in accordance with the Committee’s general recommendation 24 on women and health. It also recommends that the State party target men and boys in its policy on sexual and reproductive health. (Paragraph 63 and 64).
UN Committee against Torture
Not yet signed or ratified.
UN Committee on Migrant Workers
Not yet signed or ratified.
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
Not yet signed or ratified.
UN Committee on Enforced Disappearance
Not yet signed or ratified.