The application of the 1996 Hague Child Protection Convention to unaccompanied and separated migrant children

The Permanent Bureau of the Hague Conference on Private International Law has recently issued a document illustrating the application of the 1996 Hague Child Protection Convention to unaccompanied and separated children.

The document, drafted in preparation of the upcoming meeting of the Special Commission on the Practical Operation of the 1980 Hague Child Abduction Convention and the 1996 Hague Child Protection Convention, concludes that dialogue and collaboration “should be facilitated between authorities responsible for international co-operation in child protection matters – at both the domestic and international levels – with those responsible for immigration and asylum matters, with regard to the operation of the 1996 Convention in order to better assist unaccompanied and separated children across borders”.

The hope is also expressed, among other things, that “UNICEF and UNHCR officials will meet with government officials from some Central Authorities designated under the 1996 Convention to discuss and examine the application of the 1996 Convention to unaccompanied and separated children” and that “the global implementation of the 1996 Convention will assist with the on-going elaboration and future realisation of the United Nations Global Compact on Refugees and Global Compact for Migration”, referred to in the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on 19 September 2016.

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