UNITED NATIONS. UN EXPERT SEEKS END TO DEATH PENALTY FOR CHILDREN
September 29, 2006: countries where capital punishment is practiced should exempt children under 18 -- or adults convicted while minors -- from the death penalty, a UN human rights expert report said. Only three countries -- China, Pakistan and Iran -- have executed offenders younger than 18 years of age in the last two years, according to Amnesty International.
Paulo Sergio Pinheiro, asked by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to conduct the world body's first in-depth study on violence against children, also called on all 192 UN member-nations to provide children with universal heath care and social services as well as legal help when they have been the victims of violence.
The United Nations defines a child as anyone under the age of 18.
The main UN tool for protecting children is the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child. The United States and Somalia are the only two countries yet to ratify it. (Sources: Reuters, 29/09/2006)