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HOME > Public Statements and Opinion Papers > Statements > Statement on Conclusion of the Hague Convention and Enactment of Related Domestic Laws

Statement on Conclusion of the Hague Convention and Enactment of Related Domestic Laws

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Today, the Cabinet approved and announced its plan to prepare for conclusion of the Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (hereinafter referred to as the “Hague Convention”) and enactment of related domestic laws implementing the Hague Convention (hereinafter referred to as the "Domestic Law").

 

The Japan Federation of Bar Associations (JFBA) issued its “Statement of Opinion on Recommended Measures to be taken on the Conclusion of the Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (the Hague Convention)” on February 18, 2011, in which it recommended that the government enact the Domestic Law which provides therein, the necessary matters to ensure the appropriate implementation and operation of the Hague Convention in compliance with the "best interests of the child".

 

There are a broad range of issues to be considered from the view point of the welfare and interests of children when drafting the Domestic Law under the Japanese judicial system in order to provide new procedures and systems for returning a child to a foreign country or requesting the return of a child to Japan. Furthermore, as stated in the above mentioned Statement of Opinion, a period of approximately three years must be given before the Hague Convention and the Domestic Law take effect, in order to prepare for and notify the public of the implementation of the same. Japan should also consider accepting individual complaint procedures under the First Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women.

 

Accordingly, the government should not rush into concluding the Hague Convention and enacting the Domestic Law but instead should thoroughly clarify the issues to be considered from the view point of the welfare and interests of children and discuss and consider the issues with a wide range of persons concerned and experts in the field.

 

May 20, 2011
Kenji Utsunomiya
President
Japan Federation of Bar Associations