(Det talade ordet gäller)
Thank you for your kind invitation to this seminar.
We have just come from Manggarai in South Jakarta, where we visited the local community library.
There, we met with volunteers who work to improve the situation for children living in the area. With support from community volunteers, children are offered a safe environment where they can play and learn. They are educated about their rights. And they are encouraged to study and build a future for themselves.
The library in Manggarai is very small. But let me assure you: there is nothing small about the dreams and aspirations of the children and young people that I met there today.
It was a most inspiring visit – one that I will remember for a long time. However, it also reminded me of the challenges facing many children today.
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child states that children are to be protected from all forms of violence. Yet, for millions and millions of children all over the world – from Stockholm to Jakarta – violence is part of everyday life.
We have a long way to go until children’s rights are respected, protected and fulfilled.
Advancing children’s rights requires cooperation across national borders and participation from all parts of society.
Therefore, I am pleased that Sweden and Indonesia are working together as pathfinders in the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children.
Indeed, we have a long way to go. But with this meeting today we are taking yet another step forward – together.