Arigatou International co-signs NGO statement

Arigatou International has co-signed an NGO statement urging Member States to accede to statelessness conventions.

The document is urging Member States to accede to statelessness conventions in a General Assembly Rule of Law meeting on September 24, 2012
As member of the newly formed NGO Working Group on Birth Registration in Geneva, Arigatou International has co-signed a statement developed by Refugees International, which is another member of the working group. Refugees International (RI) has authored the NGO statement that will be received by Member States before the meeting. The statement urges Member States to follow through on pledges made at the December UNHCR ministerial meeting, accession to the conventions, and amendments to nationality law consistent with the conventions. Included is a discussion of ending gender-based discrimination and ensuring universal birth registration.

The statement exhibits cohesion with a current focus of Arigatou International, having recently decided to help advance birth registration in Yemen through UNICEF for three years from 2012.  Arigatou International is also actively promoting birth registration through the activities of those involved in the World Day of Prayer and Action initiative.

A crucial para in the statement for Arigatou International is therefore the following: “Effective and widespread birth registration in one of the most effective ways to prevent statelessness. All parents, regardless of geographic location and socioeconomic status, should be made aware of and have access to birth registration for their children. Consistent with Article 7 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, Member States should commit to free accessible birth registration and States with functioning systems should pledge to provide technical and financial resources to those States requiring assistance in creating widespread birth and civil registration system”.

This advocacy effort will be followed up by NGOs in Geneva at the end of September and early October.

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