Archive for June 17th, 2015

17/06/2015

UN Urges Ban of Micro-plastics in Cosmetics and Personal Care Products

Human Wrongs Watch

16 June 2015 – Next time you are in the shower using a refreshing exfoliating shower gel, take a moment to check what the scrubbing agents are made of. According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), chances are pretty high they are made of tiny plastic beads, and by the time the container is empty, you will have used and poured down the drain as much plastic as the packaging the gel came in.*

For the last 50 years, microparticles of plastic, called microplastics, have been used in personal care products and cosmetics (PCCP), replacing natural options. Photo: UNEP

This alarming fact is contained in a UNEP report Plastic in Cosmetics: Are We Polluting the Environment Through Our Personal Care?, which is a compilation of currently available knowledge on the linkages between cosmetics and plastic pollution in the oceans.

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17/06/2015

‘Accountability Key to Preventing Atrocities against Children in Armed Conflict’

Human Wrongs Watch

Ensuring that Member States and their military commanders on the ground remain accountable for any violent actions targeting children is key to preventing atrocities against minors affected by armed conflict, the United Nations Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, Leila Zerrougui, has affirmed.

Children sit in a UNICEF-supported centre for vulnerable children, in the conflict-affected Hajjah Governorate, Yemen. Photo: UNICEF/Brent Stirton

In an interview with UN Radio, scheduled just days before she is due to present the Secretary-General’s latest report on the issue to the Security Council, Zerrougui described a grim scenario for the world’s conflict-stranded children in 2014 – the period covered by her report – and warned that the situation had not improved.

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17/06/2015

‘Urgent Measures Needed to Ensure the Right to Education for All Girls’

Human Wrongs Watch

Although the empowerment of women has been among the most significant achievements of the past century, the international community must “push further” in its struggle to ensure the right to education for all girls, the top UN human rights official on 16 June 2015 declared.

Girls play in the schoolyard at Santo Niño Elementary School in the town of Tanauan, Philippines. Photo: UNICEF/Giacomo Pirozzi

“Investing in girls’ education is not only the right thing to do, it is also the smart thing to do,” Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said as he addressed a panel discussion on realizing the equal enjoyment of the right to education by every girl held at the UN Office at Geneva, Switzerland.

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17/06/2015

An African Girl’s Summit on Ending Child Marriage in the Continent

Human Wrongs Watch

The African Union announced the organization of and African Girl’s Summit on Ending Child Marriage in the continent on 27 – 28 November 2015 in Niamey, Niger. “Child marriage is a human rights violation that robs girls of their rights to health, to live in security, and to choose if, when and whom to marry, says the African Union. It is a harmful practice which severely affects the rights of a child and further deprives the child from attaining other aspirations like education.”*

Image: African Union

Image: African Union

Every year, about 14 million adolescent and teen girls are married, almost always forced into the arrangement by their parents.

Although the proportion of child brides has generally decreased over the last 30 years, in some regions child marriage remains common, even among the youngest generations, particularly in rural areas and among the poorest.

Among young women worldwide aged 20-24, around 1 in 3 (or 70 million) was married as children and around 1 in 9 (or 23 million) entered into marriage or union before they reached age 15. The largest numbers of child brides are concentrated in Africa.

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