Helsinki Declaration 2012

THE 2012 HELSINKI DECLARATION OF THE RIGHT TO GENITAL AUTONOMY

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Insights from the outside

Video of a presentation on effective political activism to promote the rights of children to grow up free from sexual abuse, sexual exploitation and non-therapeutic genital cutting.

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Committee Against Torture

Switzerland Monday 3rd of August.

The United Nations Committee Against Torture (CAT) explicitly criticised the surgery on intersex children that still takes place in Swiss hospitals and clinics. The criticism referred to earlier reports from CAT, CEDAW (The Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women), the Special Rapporteur on Torture and the CRC (Convention on the Rights of the Child) which recently included Intersex Genital Mutilation (IGM) as a one of a range of harmful practices.

The Concluding Observations of the Committee against Torture concerning Switzerland are due on the 14th of August 2015. Genital Autonomy and StopIGM.org are hoping for a powerful statement in the Concluding Observations condemning IGM practices.

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Myths and Multiple Standards

The Frankfurt conference went very well despite a local train strike forcing last minute programme changes! For a summary of the conference see this press release from our partner organisation Intaktiv. Thank you to all who made the event such a sucess, Intaktiv, the speakers, the GA crew and the centre’s staff. Last but not least thank you Frankfurt.

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FGM Select Committee Report

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On Thursday the 3rd of July, the Home Affairs Select Committee published a report “Female genital mutilation: the case for a national action plan.” The report condemns the lack of education, prosecution and action taken with regard to the growing prevalence of FGM within the UK.

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Human genital cutting

A presentation given by Prof. Dr. Tobe Levin to the symposium on genital autonomy, 6th May 2014.

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The assault we ignore

A presentation given by James Chegwidden, Barrister on 17th September 2013 at Keele University, Staffs, U.K. to the Genital Autonomy conference “Children’s rights in Europe: recent developments”. The presentation covers the current law surrounding male circumcision in the U.K.

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New organisation in Germany

After the Cologne ruling last year and the retrogressive law passed subsequently in the Bundestag, the German public has not been slow to take up the cause of genital autonomy for all children. A new group Intaktiv e.V. is a most welcome development in the campaign for the equal treatment, protection and respect for the rights of all children to grow up free from the genital alterations adults would like to make. Welcome to Intaktiv. The site has an English language section.

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Children’s right to physical integrity

Greater protection for children

The Council of Europe, of which the UK is one of 47 states, took an enlightened move by passing a resolution that children have a right to physical integrity. The resolution sets out a comprehensive regime of protection for children, paragraph 2 states that;

The Parliamentary Assembly is particularly worried about a category of violation of the physical integrity of children, which supporters of the procedures tend to present as beneficial to the children themselves despite clear evidence to the contrary. This includes, amongst others, female genital mutilation, the circumcision of young boys for religious reasons, early childhood medical interventions in the case of intersexual children and the submission to or coercion of children into piercings, tattoos or plastic surgery.

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Marlene Rupprecht, MdB (right) led the debate and has steered this resolution and recommendation through the Council. It is to be hoped that all member states take this resolution into their own policy making and seek to promote the human rights of children as being of paramount importance.

 

 

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