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Benin must strengthen its legislation in order to protect children from exploitation, says ECPAT

Posted on Aug 18, 2014

ECPAT International published a country monitoring report today, outlining the status of action against the commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) in Benin.

The report is one of a series of reports examining countries around the world and their policies and laws to protect against CSEC. ECPAT’s Benin monitoring report looks at all of the manifestations of CSEC within the country, including child prostitution, child sexual abuse materials (child pornography) and the trafficking of children for sexual purposes. 

More than half the population of Benin is under 18 years of age and four out of ten children are not registered at birth and do not receive a birth certificate. Birth registration is necessary for children to be able to access health, education and social services. Birth registration can also help protect against trafficking and other forms of exploitation. 

Since 2011, Benin has had legal provisions defining and punishing child pornography (child sexual abuse materials). Despite this legislation, there are considerable gaps in Benin’s legal framework and it does not conform to international standards such as the Optional Protocol on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography.  

ECPAT encourages the Government of Benin to address these concerns, and the other recommendations outlined in this report, in order to better protect its children from commercial sexual exploitation. 
 
The full report on the status of action against commercial sexual exploitation of children in Benin is available here

The official media release can be accessed here. 

About ECPAT affliate in Benin (CLOSE): Comité de Liaison des Organisations Sociales de défense des droits de l’Enfant (CLOSE) is a network of more than 30 NGOs concerned with the protection of children from sexual abuse and commercial sexual exploitation. CLOSE was established in 1998 and became an affiliate member of ECPAT International in March 2002. This network was set up in order to mobilise actors to combat trafficking and child sexual exploitation. Enfants Solidaires d’Afrique et du Monde (ESAM) is the coordinator for the network.

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