Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Forgetting That Children Have Rights

Child Camel Jockeys

The trafficking of young children for forced labor is one of the fastest growing areas in international crime. A study by the Ansar Burney Trust found that child trafficking has picked up considerable momentum over the past few years and one of the most disturbing roles these children were being forced into were those of camel jockeys.
The Ansar Burney Trust has for the last 16 years been working to bring to an end the cruel and atrocious act of using innocent young boys as camel jockeys in the Arab world. These children, some as young as 4 years old, are forced to work up to 18 hours a day in the scorching heat of the deserts.
At the Races© ABT
The child who cannot stay awake for the 18 hours of gruelling work is given a “karba” (electric shock), while those who decide to disobey orders or play games are beaten and tortured. Stories of cruelty inflicted on many of the children rescued by Ansar Burney Trust involved them being tied up in chains in the desert heat, beaten with metal rods and leather whips, cut with blades and being raped by their “owners”.
They are deliberately underfed and malnourished to keep their weigh down and allow the camel on which they ride to run faster. Some are fed only three biscuits a day with water, while others are given dirty and unhygienic food – worse than what is fed to the camels. If that does not bring their weight down, they are forced to wear metal helmets to make them bleed and reduce weight that way.
Another reason that very young children are used is the fact that when scared or in pain – they scream; and the louder the child screams in pain the faster the camel to which he is strapped will run.
Child Camel Jockey© ABT
The children are fastened to the camels with Velcro, but the ride is so rough that many fall and are gravely injured – dying a few days later due to the lack of medical attention or care. Some die on the spot by being crushed under the feet of racing camels and some are even killed by the owners of the camps because they wanted to leave. Those who survive, bare scars of their torment and permanent disabilities.
We estimate that as of last year, there were more than 20,000 children working as camel jockeys all over the Middle East – majority of whom had been smuggled from South Asia and Africa.
A Glimmer of Hope
Ansar Burney with rescued camel jockeys at the Rehabilitation Center in Abu Dhabi© ABT
UAE: In November 2004, Mr. Ansar Burney met with His Highness Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces. At the meeting a decision was taken by the UAE leadership to ban the use of underage camel jockeys and enforce the law with a punishment of fine and imprisonment. A centre was established a week later in Abu Dhabi under the authority of Ansar Burney Trust; it has the capacity to house 400 children and provide them with clean food and clothing, a good education, excellent medical treatment and a safe shelter. After 4 months, these children are to be repatriated back to their home countries.
QatarIn May 2005, the Government of Qatar has announced severe punishments on the use of underage children as camel jockeys and ordered to replace them with robots. The Qatari government and the Ansar Burney Trust plan to establish a centre in Qatar for the treatment and rehabilitation of the children rescued from camps in the country.
Examples to follow: The Ansar Burney Trust is currently in the process of persuading other Middle Eastern countries to follow the example set by Qatar and the UAE; and ban the use of underage children as camel jockeys.
For more information,. please click here


Amazing from the moment of conception.

I came across this story when I was looking up "Children's Rights".  This is only one of several horrible stories on the same website of the lack of compassion being shown to the world's children.  (Find the website HERE.)
This type of thing just shows that we're living in a world that doesn't understand that children have the exact same rights to freedom, compassion, love, and life, that adults have.  It also shows me just how blessed we are that some of us DO recognize their value and rights.  Children are a gift.  They deserve to be treated as such.  And, as any other gift we're given, they can be taken away.  Having children isn't a's a privilege.
I wanted to make people aware that this shit even exists.  It's easy to live our own lives completely ignorant about these events.  (I sure didn't know about this before today!)
As a whole we need to work together to make people aware of the way children are treated across the globe.  We can peacefully parent our own children, and slowly that is going to make a difference in the world we live in.  But this message...that children are a blessing, and they need protection no matter where they're born, or what their needs to be shouted from the rooftop!
Children deserve the very best, starting the second they are conceived.  No child should ever have to feel the pain of being circumcised.  No child should ever have to be afraid, to be hurt, to be neglected...
And, if there's one thing I will continue to do as long as I live, it's to stand up for those who cannot speak, and those who's voice is so small that it's easily ignored.
 "Greatest Love Of All"

I believe the children are our are future 
Teach them well and let them lead the way 
Show them all the beauty they possess inside 
Give them a sense of pride to make it easier
Let the children's laughter remind us how we used to be 
Everybody searching for a hero 
People need someone to look up to...

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