Universiteit Leiden

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Guest lecture on children’s rights and immigration law

On Friday 8 February 2019, we were honored by a visit of Ms. Anna Batalla, Human Rights Officer at the Petitions and Inquiries Section of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights - United Nations, who gave a lecture on bringing a case to the Committee on the Rights of the Child and on the jurisprudence of the Committee.

All three cases that were declared admissible until now and in which the Committee on the Rights of the Child has published its views concern immigration law. The Committee has held in I.A.M. v. Denmark that the deportation of a mother and daughter to Guinea would put the child at risk of being subjected to female general mutilation (see the analysis of Mark Klaassen and Peter Rodrigues on LeidenLawBlog and Julia Sloth-Nielsen on the Leiden Children's Rights Observatory).

In Y.B. and N.S. v. Belgium, the Committee held that the refusal of a humanitarian visa to a Moroccan boy was adopted under the Kafala regime by the Belgian authorities amounted to a violation of the CRC. In N.B.F. v. Spain, the Committee held that the age determination procedure conducted by the Spanish authorities on a boy claiming to be a minor violated the safeguards of the Convention. Ms Batalla discussed the background of these cases with the students and engaged in a lively discussion on the views of the Committee.

The guest lecture was organised for the students of the course Migration and Children’s Rights in the Advanced LL.M programme International Children’s Rights and the course Kind & Migratie of the LL.M programme Child Law. The courses are taught by Prof. Peter Rodrigues and Dr. Mark Klaassen of the Institute of Immigration Law. We would like to express our gratitude to Ms Batalla for travelling to Leiden and informing us about the work of the Committee on the Rights of the Child.

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