Hungary ratifies Council of Europe convention to protect children against sexual abuse

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Hungary became the 37th state of the Council of Europe to ratify the Council of Europe’s Convention on Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse. It will enter into force in Hungary on the 1st of December 2015.

The treaty – known as "the Lanzarote Convention" – requires criminalisation of all kinds of sexual offences against children, including sexual abuse in the circle of trust, sexual activities with a child below the legal age; child prostitution and pornography; as well as solicitation of children for sexual purposes ("grooming") and "sex tourism". In June 2015, the Council of Europe’s Lanzarote Committee recommended that "online grooming" of children via Internet be criminalized, too. The Lanzarote Convention requires states parties - in Europe and beyond - to adopt legislation and take measures to prevent sexual violence, protect child victims and prosecute perpetrators.

One in five children under the age of 18 is a victim of sexual violence, and in most of the cases the perpetrator is a family member or another person the child trusts, such as a family friend, sports trainer or faith leader. Because sexual abuse of children is often a “taboo” theme, the Council of Europe runs a campaign called "ONE in FIVE" to break the silence and empower everyone, including children, to speak up.

SOURCE: Council of Europe, 04/08/2015, http://www.coe.int/en/web/portal/-/hungary-ratifies-council-of-europe-co...