Didier Reynders pleased with the United Nations Human Rights Council’s acceptance of Belgian’s resolution on the children of someone who has been sentenced to death

date: 22 March 2013

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders is pleased that the Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva yesterday adopted a Belgian resolution over the rights of the children of someone who has been sentenced to death.

He announced this initiative in his speech to the UNHRC on 27 February. The resolution was adopted by consensus and backed by 67 countries from across the five regions.

The minister feels that this is a milestone in the protection of children and in the fight to abolish the death penalty. It is the first time that the UNHRC has acknowledged by consensus the negative consequences of the death penalty on the rights of children who have a parent that has been sentenced to death or executed.

Among other things, the Belgian resolution provides for a panel discussion among the United Nations during the September session of the UNHRC. This panel will make recommendations to the countries that still apply the death penalty. These recommendations will concern how the countries can better protect the rights of the children of those sentenced to death, and how they can offer these children the right support and protection.

This initiative demonstrates that Belgium remains active in protecting and promoting human rights, even though our country is no longer sitting on the UNHRC as of this year.