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EU asks Kabul to take more steps for children protection

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KABUL: The European Union (EU) has called on the government of Afghanistan to take more steps in protecting children, saying that a report recently released by the US state department had highlighted important points about legally protection of Afghan children, which was also in the EU’s priorities.

The US department of state said in its report issued on June 25th that Afghanistan was third in the list of countries with the least standards for prevention of human trafficking. The report has named Iran, Russia, Belarus and Turkmenistan as other states in the list.

It has criticized the government of Afghanistan for failing in fight against children’s sexual slavery and child soldiers.

“It should be very important to protect children’s lives in all societies especially during conflicts. As the report has highlighted sexual abuse of children in Logar province, we said that children in Afghanistan need to be protected against violence and sexual mistreatment and this should be the priority of the Afghan security forces as well as the country’s civil society,” said Virginie Battu Henriksson, spokeswoman of the EU’s foreign policy chief.

She said that they had shared their concerns directly with the government of Afghanistan and had asked for their certain measures.

The US state department says about the sexual slavery as bacha bazi in Afghanistan, adding that children are recruited as soldiers. However, it says that there are some centers for protection of underage boys at the police recruitment centers and the government of Afghanistan has prevented the recruitment of 357 underage boys in police force.

The Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission has also expressed concerns in this regard.

Zabihollah Farhang, from the commission emphasized that the government should assure about children’s rights.

The report says that boys are recruited in police with the aim of bacha bazi by police commanders especially in the remote outposts, an allegation strongly rejected by Afghan officials.

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