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U.S. Statement at the UPR of Guinea-Bissau
January 24, 2015

21st Session of the Universal Periodic Review
Statement by the Delegation of the United States of America

January 23, 2015

– as prepared –

Thank you.

The United States welcomes the Guinea-Bissau delegation to the UPR Working Group.

We commend Guinea- Bissau for a free and fair election process in April 2014. We also note, and commend, Guinea-Bissau’s efforts to implement its law against female genital mutilation or cutting and encourage continued efforts to prevent and respond to all forms of gender-based violence.

We also remain concerned about the failure to prevent the worst forms of child labor and to address child trafficking. Although Guinea-Bissau has laws that prohibit all forms of human trafficking, the government has not used these laws to prosecute suspected human traffickers.

Bearing in mind these concerns, we recommend that Guinea-Bissau:
1. Develop legislation to protect all children from the worst forms of child labor, including commercial sexual exploitation;

2. Enforce legislation that criminalizes child trafficking, through investigation and prosecution of trafficking offenses, reconvene the Inter-Ministerial Steering Committee on Trafficking, and allocate specific funds to the committee for implementation of a national action plan;

3. Complement legislative efforts to improve women’s rights with public awareness campaigns on female genital mutilation or cutting and protection against abuse and sexual violence.

Thank you.