Azerbaijan ratifies Convention to protect children against sexual violence
Azerbaijan has become the 46th state to have ratified the Convention on Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse (“Lanzarote Convention”). Today, the Permanent Representative of Azerbaijan to the Council of Europe, Ambassador Fakhraddin Ismayilov, has deposited the instrument of ratification in the presence of the Deputy Secretary General, Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni. The Convention will enter into force in Azerbaijan on 1 April 2020.
Deputy Secretary General Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni said: “Sexual abuse of children is a most heinous crime that is sadly all too common in Europe. I welcome ratification of the Lanzarote Convention by Azerbaijan and call on more states to join the cause.”
One in five children under the age of 18 in Europe is a victim of sexual violence. The Lanzarote Convention obliges states to criminalise all kinds of sexual offences against children, including online, to protect victims and to prosecute perpetrators. It also requests countries, inter alia, to ensure that the statute of limitation for initiating proceedings regarding sexual offences against children continues for a period of time sufficient to allow the efficient start of proceedings after the victim has reached the age of majority.