The European Parliament Intergroup on Children’s Rights is following with dismay and deep apprehension the situation of 47 people, including 13 unaccompanied children, in the rescue ship SeaWatch 3 stranded in the Mediterranean Sea few miles away from the Sicilian shore, as it unfolds under our eyes. It is not acceptable that vulnerable people, such as unaccompanied children, who have suffered unspeakable atrocities, violence and abuse, are involved in these situations.

A child is first and foremost a child and need to be treated as such. Europe should mean safety for children, and all the assistance and support should be guaranteed to them anytime, as recently highlighted by the European Court for Human Rights”, said Caterina Chinnici, Chair of the European Parliament Intergroup on Children’s Rights.

The European Parliament Resolution on the protection of migrant children of 3 May 2018 called EU Member States to abolish immigration detention for migrant children and taking the best interests of the child as a primary consideration throughout the whole process and in all decisions and actions concerning children.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Child, ratified by all EU Member States, which does not differentiate children on their migration status. Let’s make sure that EU Member States fully implement the Convention and protect migrant children”, concluded Caterina Chinnici.

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